Saturday, March 7, 2009

Cybersecurity official quits, blasts NSA power grab

A top federal cybersecurity official resigned this week in a letter sharply critical of what he described as a power grab by the National Security Agency.

Rod Beckström, director of Homeland Security's National Cybersecurity Center, said in his letter that NSA "effectively controls DHS cyber efforts through detailees, technology insertions," and has proposed moving some functions to the agency's Fort Meade, Md., headquarters. Beckström was picked for the job in March 2008 and reported to DHS secretaries Michael Chertoff and Janet Napolitano. His letter also took aim at DHS, saying the center "received only five weeks of funding" in the last year because of "roadblocks engineered within the department" and by the White House. (DHS has claimed that cybersecurity was one of Chertoff's "top four priorities for '08.")


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