Eric Howard Schmidt has been announced as President Obama's new White House Cybersecurity Coordinator. Schmidt will work in collaboration with the intelligence, military and other agencies which traditionally have not worked or played well together in the same sandbox. Current Internet technologies are evolving at a rapid pace with impacts that no longer are applicable to simple cyberwars online or denial of service attacks on a specific target as has occurred in the past. Schmidt will have his plate full dealing with internal politics let alone with the Directors of the CIA, NSA, FBI and DHS.
New challenges will require Schmidt to broaden the scope of what the role originally encompassed, to include privacy, social networks and communications applications that now span smart phones, short messaging applications and networks.
The President's choice in selecting Mr. Schmidt is a good one, bringing a plethora of experience in law enforcement, corporate security and non-profit organizations, all involving security. A few critics might raise an eyebrow suggesting he could have done a better job at Microsoft given their history of security vulnerabilities in the products it sells.
Time will tell if his role at the White House will make a difference by creating working relationships that must do a better job of enhancing security across a broad spectrum of players.