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[infowar.de] White House To Fill Cybersecurity Posts
White House To Fill Cybersecurity Posts
Key Roles Seen in Terrorism Fight
By Brian Krebs
January 10, 2003
The White House is planning to nominate a former intelligence agency
chairman and a high-ranking Commerce Department official to shape the
way information technology is used in the fight against terrorism,
according to government and technology industry sources.
The nominees will be key players in the new Department of Homeland
Security and would be influential on a range of technology issues,
including protecting the nation's online infrastructure, directing the
development of new surveillance and defense technologies and preserving
the privacy rights of citizens.
James R. Clapper, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency,
will be nominated to lead the department's Information Analysis and
Infrastructure Protection division. He would be responsible not only for
IT security, but also for getting the often-competing intelligence
agencies to pool their data. Interagency rivalries contributed to a lack
of awareness of terrorist activity that presaged the Sept. 11, 2001,
attacks, according to a number of studies.
Commerce Department official John S. Tritak will run the Infrastructure
Protection division under Clapper, administration sources said.
In keeping with the White House policy of not discussing appointments
until they're made, a spokesman declined to comment. A spokesman for
Clapper also declined to comment. Tritak did not return telephone calls
A retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant general, Clapper runs the National
Imagery and Mapping Agency, which analyzes satellite photos and makes
military maps. He formerly was vice president and director of
intelligence programs at SRA International, a Fairfax-based defense
Tritak, regarded in the business community as a consensus-builder, is
seen as a shoo-in for the Infrastructure Protection section. He is the
director of the Commerce Department's Critical Infrastructure Assurance
Office, which coordinates government and private-sector efforts to
protect important networks from physical and cyber-based attacks.
Richard A. Clarke, the White House's cyberspace security point man since
1998, will not join the department, but will remain chairman of the
President's Critical Infrastructure Protection Board, according to one
administration official and several technology lobbyists with close ties
to the administration's cybersecurity program. That board is responsible
for developing the administration's broad policies regarding
cybersecurity and protecting against online attacks on
the nation's vital infrastructures. The Homeland Security Department
will be responsible for carrying out those policies.
The presidential board plans to release a national cybersecurity
strategy report this month or in early February.
A senior congressional source said high-ranking CIA officer Joan Dempsey
is a strong candidate for the Information Analysis division under
Clapper, but a source in the intelligence community disagreed, saying
that she is not in the running. The head of the Information Analysis
division would be in charge of persuading rival spy agencies to share
Collaboration among agencies is tough to achieve, said Kim Dougherty,
vice president of national security affairs at the U.S. Chamber of
"Each has this defensive posture and doesn't want to show or share all
their cards, and it's vital that you have someone who understands this
and can work through the various bureaucracies," Dougherty said.
One key technology post has already been filled at the department.
Steven Cooper will be chief information officer, taking on essentially
the same role he had for the past year in the White House Office of
Homeland Security. Cooper will be responsible for integrating disparate
information technology systems from 24 agencies that are moving into the
new department. He previously was executive director of Strategic
Information Delivery for Corning Inc.
The White House has not yet chosen an undersecretary of science and
technology, who would supervise the Homeland Security Advanced Research
Projects Agency, a division of the department with a proposed $500
million budget. The agency will be modeled after the Defense Advanced
Research Projects Agency, a Defense Department program that was
instrumental in creating the framework of the Internet in the 1960s.
The White House also will name a chief privacy officer for the
department, responding to comments from lawmakers, civil-liberties
groups and the public that defending against terrorism should not
compromise privacy rights.
The administration is considering Nuala O'Connor Kelly, chief counsel at
the Commerce Department's Technology Administration, sources said, as
well as Donald A. "Andy" Purdy Jr., an adviser on the president's
O'Connor Kelly was deputy privacy officer at Internet banner-ad giant
DoubleClick Inc. Purdy has been chief deputy general counsel at the U.S.
Sentencing Commission since 1989, and a staff member of the Senate
Purdy said he is interested in the job. O'Connor Kelly did not return
telephone calls seeking comment.
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