President Trump renews declaration of cybersecurity national emergency

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President Trump informed Congress Wednesday that he will continue the cybersecurity national emergency first declared by then-President Obama in 2015.

According to the National Emergencies Act, the president must declare a continuation of a national emergency within 90 days prior to its termination, otherwise it is automatically terminated.

“Significant malicious cyber-enabled activities originating from, or directed by persons located, in whole or in substantial part, outside the United States, continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States,” the statement to Congress reads.

Executive Order 13694 was enacted by President Obama on April 1, 2015. The order allows for the Treasury Department — in consultation with the Justice and State Departments — to freeze the assets of anyone discovered hacking or in any way connected to hacking that could threaten national security or foreign policy.

In December 2016, President Obama amended the order via a new executive order, 13757, to freeze assets of anyone connected to hacking related to the 2016 election. The Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security sanctioning added 23 entities to its list, all of which are located in Russia or Russian-controlled Crimea, Ukraine, according to Department of Commerce documents.

The continuation order does not specify a timeline, but allows the president to continue the national emergency beyond it’s April 1 anniversary expiration date.