By Shaun Waterman
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
August 13, 2009
The resignation last week of two of the government's top cybersecurity
officials has raised questions about President Obama's much-touted
effort to fix policy for defending the nation's computer networks.
Officials say the decisions by Melissa Hathaway of the National Security
Council and Mischel Kwon of the Department of Homeland Security are not
related, but some observers have linked them to suggest the White House
is faltering in its effort to implement a new cybersecurity strategy and
appoint a high-level national coordinator for the issue.
Rep. Bennie Thompson, Mississippi Democrat, chairman of the House
Homeland Security Committee, said in a statement he was "troubled with
the apparent loss of momentum on cyber-security, an issue that is
critical to our national and economic security." Former officials said
the resignations, though their timing was coincidental, were indicative
of the strain on top cybersecurity staff.
"This says a lot about the barriers and negative job conditions that
cyber-security professionals within the U.S. government face," said
former Department of Energy cybersecurity official Eugene Schultz in an
e-mail posting for the SANS Institute, an industry nonprofit that does
research and education on computer security.
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