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Obama hints at cybersecurity shakeup with review

Obama hints at cybersecurity shakeup with review
Obama hints at cybersecurity shakeup with review 

By Declan McCullagh
Politics and Law
CNet News
February 9, 2009

In a move that could reshape the federal government's cybersecurity 
efforts, President Obama on Monday said a former Booz Allen consultant 
would conduct an immediate two-month review of all related agency 

The announcement indicates that the White House's National Security 
Council may wrest significant authority away from the U.S. Department of 
Homeland Security, which weathered withering criticism last fall for its 
lackluster efforts.

Obama selected Melissa Hathaway, who worked for the director of national 
intelligence in the Bush administration and was director of an 
multi-agency "Cyber Task Force," to conduct the review with an eye to 
ensuring that cybersecurity efforts are well-integrated and competently 

"The president is confident that we can protect our nation's critical 
cyber infrastructure while at the same time adhering to the rule of law 
and safeguarding privacy rights and civil liberties," said John Brennan, 
the president's homeland security adviser.

Hathaway's appointment comes as Obama plans to overhaul the National 
Security Council, expanding its membership and effectively centralizing 
more decision-making in the White House staff. That would vest more 
authority in a staff run by James L. Jones, a former Marine Corps 
commandant who warned at a speech in Munich over the weekend that 
terrorists could use "cyber-technologies" to cause catastrophic damage.


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