The Washington Post is reporting that President Obama will name Howard A. Schmidt, who worked as a cyber security expert at eBay and Microsoft, and served in the Bush administration, as the White House cybersecurity coordinator.
Melissa Hathaway, the first “Cyber Czar” under the Obama administration, is leaving her post. Reports the Wall Street Journal:
Melissa Hathaway, who completed the Obama administration’s cybersecurity review in April, said in an interview that she was leaving for personal reasons. “It’s time to pass the torch,” she said, adding that she and her colleagues have provided an “initial down payment for what’s needed to start to address cybersecurity.”
In the past year, intelligence officials have grown increasingly concerned about Chinese and Russian cyberspies surveilling U.S. infrastructure and military networks.
Given that cybersecurity is a big priority for President Obama, expect the position to be re-filled soon.
The Washington Post reports:
President Obama is expected to announce late this week that he will create a “cyber czar,” a senior White House official who will have broad authority to develop strategy to protect the nation’s government-run and private computer networks, according to people who have been briefed on the plan.
The adviser will have the most comprehensive mandate granted to such an official to date and will probably be a member of the National Security Council but will report to the national security adviser as well as the senior White House economic adviser, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the deliberations are not final.
Good news, especially given recent attacks on U.S. government networks.