Napolitano directs review of DHS' cybersecurity efforts

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano today directed DHS officials to review the department’s cybersecurity efforts as part of a wide-ranging evaluation of current programs and strategies. She also called for a review of the department’s strategy to secure the border between the United States and Canada.

DHS is responsible for securing the civilian.gov domain and is leading efforts to work with private industry on cybersecurity under the Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative. As part of the initiative, DHS also is charged with bringing together officials from the Defense Department, DHS, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Justice Department to coordinate operational efforts.

For the review, Napolitano asked DHS officials to give her oral and written reports next month on:

  • DHS’ authority and responsibilities for the protection of the government and private sector domains.
  • The department’s relationships with other government agencies regarding cybersecurity.
  • DHS’ cybersecurity programs and timeframes for achieving the department’s responsibilities and goals.
A group of experts and lawmakers on the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th Presidency urged that coordination of cybersecurity be handled at the White House. President Barack Obama’s recently released homeland security agenda called for establishing the position of national cyber adviser to report directly to the president and coordinate federal agency efforts and national policy.

About the Author

Ben Bain is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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