Fed cybersecurity chiefs get a council

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Information security has become important enough to warrant a federal Chief Security Officers Council to work with similar groups of government executives, the man in charge of national cybersecurity said this week.

There is already a CIO Council, a CFO Council and a Chief Human Capital Officers Council, but security is so complicated now that Amit Yoran, director of the Homeland Security Department's National Cyber Security Division, decided to initiate a council focused specifically on that one issue.

"The CIOs have a lot on their plate and under [the Federal Information Security Act] every agency must have a security official...and this allows them to collaborate and discuss issues," Yoran told Federal Computer Week while at the National Cyber Security Summit.

The event is aimed at identifying specific initiatives and steps that will help government and the private sector implement the goals outlined in the Bush administration's National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace. In the meantime, Yoran said, agencies need to do more than continue their FISMA work; they should push for significant improvement.

The new CSO Council will work closely with the CIO Council, but having a separate forum where chief security officers can get together and discuss problems, tactics and best practices should make improvement easier, Yoran said.

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