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The United States is able to finally move forward in its cyber defense efforts

After months of delays and speculation, President Obama has chosen Howard Schmidt, a corporate cyber security expert who also worked at Microsoft and eBay, to enhance the country's cyber infrastructure.

Schmidt, who also was an administration adviser for former President George W. Bush, will be responsible for coordinating military and civilian resources.  Furthermore, the latest member of Obama's cabinet will communicate regularly with Obama, and will also work with the president's economic group.

President Obama first announced the creation of the cyber czar position in late May, but said there wouldn't be a rush to appoint someone.  Schmidt will work with the National Security Council, not the National Economic Council, as this is the first time a person has been appointed as cybersecurity adviser.

In the previous administration, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Security Agency (NSA) were involved in a power struggle that led to ineffective cyber security.

The problem was so serious, in fact, Rod Beckstrom, former National Cybersecurity Center head, resigned due to the power struggle between the DHS and NSA.

Cybersecurity has been a pressing matter for Obama's administration, as the threat of foreign-based cyber attacks has grown significantly.  There have been numerous candidates considered for the job -- ranging from former Silicon Valley executives to a candidate who reportedly wasn't a fan of privacy -- with wide speculation among journalists.

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Qualified? Holy crap!
By Yawgm0th on 12/23/2009 4:03:14 PM , Rating: 2
Stolen from Wikipedia:
Schmidt holds a bachelor's degree in business administration (BSBA) and a master’s degree in organizational management (MAOM) from the University of Phoenix. He also holds an honorary doctorate degree in humane letters. Schmidt’s certifications include CISSP and CISM.[10] He is a professor of practice at the Georgia Institute of Technology's GTISC, professor of research at Idaho State University, adjunct distinguished fellow with Carnegie Mellon's CyLab, and a distinguished fellow with the Ponemon Institute. [11]

A CISSP is pretty much perfect for this position. You don't want a CISSP doing your firewall configuration or penetration testing (unless the person actually has low-level technical knowledge), but there isn't another set of letters I'd rather see in a position like this. Someone with broad, high-level security knowledge is exactly what this position needed. I'm glad he didn't pick some MBA-type management tool with no technical knowledge or someone from the DoD who knows nothing about computer security.

RE: Qualified? Holy crap!
By hiscross on 12/23/2009 4:25:17 PM , Rating: 3
I got interested in studying and taking the CISSP test a few years ago. This is what I leaned, CISSP is an inch deep in practically, and a mile wide in information. It does not qualify you or make you a security expert. Only practical real world experience will do that for you.

RE: Qualified? Holy crap!
By Yawgm0th on 12/23/2009 8:14:20 PM , Rating: 2
That's pretty much exactly what I just said. CISSP holders generally have broad, high-level technical information, but generally not in-depth, low-level technical information. The person in this position needs the former, but not the latter.

This person isn't going to be doing any technical work. Rather, he will be selecting some of the people that do and making some of the larger decisions. I think his qualifications line up with what his job will be.

RE: Qualified? Holy crap!
By chagrinnin on 12/24/2009 1:49:46 AM , Rating: 2
Besides that,...he went to the Pokemon Institute. How cool is that!

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