DHS accelerates cyber workforce development

The Homeland Security Department is establishing a task force that aims to advance efforts in cyber workforce development within the federal government, according to Secretary Janet Napolitano.

Co-chaired by Jeff Moss, chief security officer at the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, and Alan Paller, director of research at the SANS Institute, the new initiative will work on strategies that could include beefing up DHS’ involvement in cyber competitions and university programs. Other goals include strengthening private-public partnerships and collaborating with interagency partners to develop a federal cyber workforce.

Napolitano broke the news about the task force at a White House event where she met with industry and small-business representatives to discuss DHS’ ongoing work to secure the online community and develop the cyber workforce. DHS posted an account of the event.

“Today, we face an increasing demand for the best and brightest in the cybersecurity field across industry, academia and government,” the secretary said, quote din the DHS release. “DHS is committed to working with our partners at universities and throughout the private sector to develop the next generation of cyber professionals to protect against evolving cyber threats.”

Napolitano in April traveled to California where she spoke to students at San Jose State University on cybersecurity and expanding the cyber workforce, stressing collaboration as a way to reduce web-based threats, recounted in another DHS posting.

“To minimize the risk of a successful cyber attack, we need everyone, including our industry partners, the general public, and yes, our partners in academia, to do their part,” she told the audience.

About the Author

Camille Tuutti is a former FCW staff writer who covered federal oversight and the workforce.

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

  • Shutterstock image.

    A 'minibus' appropriations package could be in the cards

    A short-term funding bill is expected by Sept. 30 to keep the federal government operating through early December, but after that the options get more complicated.

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco

    DOD launches new tech hub in Austin

    The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

Reader comments

Thu, Jun 14, 2012 Givon Zirkind new jersey

If DHS was really interested in improving their workforce, they would work with talented civilians, law abiding citizens. Consider non-decryptable encryption. http://bit.ly/KBvUdZ It only leaves the brute force option. But, the # of permutations and necessary tries are astronomical. The permutations make this encryption very different from a street algebraic approach. Which means, an infinitesimal chance of decryption. A much better way, IMHO. Theoretically & practically. Certainly better than the razz-majazz of hashing. There are also the issues of gov't & control. Non-decryptable encryption has been around since 1930s & one time key encryption. But, restricted to military use. In limited forms, it should be permitted for civilian use, IMHO. So, is DHS realy concerned about security & hiring talented security people?

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group