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Presidential Candidate John Delaney Wants To Create a Department of Cybersecurity

On Tuesday, former Maryland representative and 2020 presidential candidate John Delaney announced a plan to create a Department of Cybersecurity that “would be led by a cabinet-level secretary who would be in charge of implementing the United States’ cybersecurity strategy,” reports The Verge. “The proposal is the first major cybersecurity push from any presidential candidate so far this cycle.” From the report: In a press release, Delaney argued that the U.S.’s cyber authorities are spread too thin across too many agencies. This new agency would work to streamline the country’s current approach. “Securing our cyber-infrastructure is not only a national security priority, it is an economic one as well,” Delaney said. “In light of the many recent and continued cyberattacks on our country, we need to establish a cabinet-level agency to focus on protecting our cyberspace.”

Currently, the cybersecurity responsibility is scattered across a number of agencies, with Homeland Security handling threats to civilian agencies, US Cyber Command dealing with military cyberattacks, the FBI prosecuting federal and international cybercrime, and a string of ISACs coordinating private sector actors alongside government agencies. In the past, the White House has appointed a cybersecurity coordinator, or “czar,” to work across those agencies, but President Trump eliminated the position in May 2018, leaving no single person or agency in charge of leading the country’s cybersecurity efforts.

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