DHS takes new tack on security

Homeland Security business lines

The Homeland Security Department is starting a new effort to look at information security needs across business lines, said Steve Cooper, chief information officer at the department.

The department already has two separate groups working on infrastructure security and applications security issues. But Cooper said officials are now forming task forces that stretch across each of the department's directorates — Border and Transportation Security, Information Analysis and Infrastructure Protection, Emergency Preparedness and Response, Science and Technology, and Management.

The task forces will look at the different business processes that are common across all of the directorates and that that need to be secured, Cooper said, speaking April 1 at the Secure E-Business Summit in Crystal City, Va.

The department deliberately separated the infrastructure and applications security groups to make sure that they addressed all issues on their own before coming back together, Cooper said.

No one has really ever looked at security from the business process point of view before, and the department is not far along in this initiative yet, Cooper said. So far, most of the work has been done in the border and transportation security arena, he said.

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