06:29 PM
Connect Directly

U.S. Cybersecurity Director Resigns, Blames NSA

Rod Beckstrom criticizes the NSA's dominance of most of the nation's cybersecurity initiatives.

Lawmakers in the House will hear testimony from various experts on Tuesday about the progress of the government's cybersecurity review, which should be completed next month.

Howard Schmidt, president and CEO of R&H Security Consulting and a security expert who has held positions at eBay, Microsoft, and various government posts, said Beckstrom's departure was not unexpected, given the typical shuffling of deck chairs that accompanies a new administration.

Perhaps as a result of his experience in the Air Force and with various government security and law enforcement agencies, Schmidt suggested that Beckstrom's criticism of the NSA was excessive. "If I was back in the government and I was looking for an agency as an organization to help protect my systems, I would be looking to the NSA," he said.

Schmidt supports the idea of a public-private partnership between the NSA and the organizations that own and operate much of the U.S. critical infrastructure. But he also said that in the context of government systems, the kind of secrecy that comes with NSA involvement may be appropriate. "The days of security by obscurity are long gone, but there are things not to be aired in public," he said.

Between the NSA and NIST, which oversees federal technology standards, there's a lot of good work being done for the public's benefit, said Schmidt. "We shouldn't be afraid of them."

InformationWeek will highlight innovative government IT organizations in an upcoming issue. Nominate your agency by submitting an essay on your most innovative IT initiative completed in the last year. Find out more and nominate your organization by May 1.

2 of 2
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
E-Commerce Security: What Every Enterprise Needs to Know
The mainstream use of EMV smartcards in the US has experts predicting an increase in online fraud. Organizations will need to look at new tools and processes for building better breach detection and response capabilities.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
Published: 2015-10-15
The Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) subsystem in the Linux kernel through 4.x mishandles requests for Graphics Execution Manager (GEM) objects, which allows context-dependent attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) via an application that processes graphics data, as demonstrated b...

Published: 2015-10-15
netstat in IBM AIX 5.3, 6.1, and 7.1 and VIOS 2.2.x, when a fibre channel adapter is used, allows local users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in eXtplorer before 2.1.8 allows remote attackers to hijack the authentication of arbitrary users for requests that execute PHP code.

Published: 2015-10-15
Directory traversal vulnerability in QNAP QTS before 4.1.4 build 0910 and 4.2.x before 4.2.0 RC2 build 0910, when AFP is enabled, allows remote attackers to read or write to arbitrary files by leveraging access to an OS X (1) user or (2) guest account.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) 1.1j allows local users to gain privileges via vectors involving addition of an SSH key, aka Bug ID CSCuw46076.

Dark Reading Radio