In move to consolidate cybersecurity, Obama taps Hathaway to lead review

In move to consolidate cybersecurity, Obama taps Hathaway to lead review

Summary: First a 60-day review, then Hathaway will be tapped as cyberczar to centralize cybersecurity efforts.

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TOPICS: Security
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The White House has ordered an immediate, 60-day review of all cybersecurity activities, to be headed by the woman who will likely be appointed permanent cyberczar. The review is being led by Melissa Hathaway, who will serve as Acting Senior Director for Cyberspace for the National Security and Homeland Security Councils during the review period, the White House says. That has tongues awagging that she will be the permanent cyberczar after the review period has ended. According to the official statement:
This 60-day interagency review will develop a strategic framework to ensure that U.S. Government cyber security initiatives are appropriately integrated, resourced and coordinated with Congress and the private sector.

"The national security and economic health of the United States depend on the security, stability, and integrity of our Nation's cyberspace, both in the public and private sectors. The President is confident that we can protect our nation's critical cyber infrastructure while at the same time adhering to the rule of law and safeguarding privacy rights and civil liberties," said Assistant to the President for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security John Brennan.

The Wall Street Journal reports that White House plans to create a central cybersecurity office, with Hathaway at the helm. The 60-day review is preliminary to the creation of that office.
National Security Adviser James Jones, however, wanted more study of the issue and ordered an independent review, which resulted in the appointment of Ms. Hathaway to the White House post to conduct the review, according to one person familiar with the matter.

Hathaway's position is a few rungs down from the president, which disappointed Clinton-era security pro Roger Cressey: "They need a nationally known person to run cyber from the White House," he said. "Otherwise it's just old wine in a new bottle."

Hathaway designed a cybersecurity plan for the Bush Administration and previously worked in cybersecurity at Booz Allen.

Topic: Security

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  • A purely political move?

    I fear that the move is simply a political one to demonstrate that the new president 'has the ear' for new technology.

    Appointing a chief of 'office of what-not-or-other' and adding the buzzword cybersecurity does not solve problems.

    It merely creates another powerhouse that will join the tug of war between CIA, NSA, FBI, DEA and several unnamed agencies.

    Spirovski Bozidar
    http://www.shortinfosec.net
    Bozhidar