White House’s cybersecurity chief calls it quits, adding uncertainty to current legislative gridlock

White House’s cybersecurity chief calls it quits, adding uncertainty to current legislative gridlock ...

The White House today lost its key cybersecurity official, who intends on returning to ‘private life,’ The Hill reports.

Moments ago we brought you news covering the current status of cybersecurity legislation in Congress, a critical topic as the bills being debated may have wide-sweeping impacts on digital privacy, and the passing of personal information to government intelligence agencies.

However, as noted in our previous post, there is much doubt about the way forward for such a bill to pass the House, the Senate, and the desk of the President. Forgive us the self quote, but here’s where we stand, in regards to the passage of a comprehensive cybersecurity bill that all in power will agree on: “Therefore, what can pass the Senate, and the President, can’t get passed the House, and vice versa.”

The exit of Howard Schmidt, the White House’s point man for cybersecurity work, can be viewed from two perspectives: first, that a new leader is required for anything to pass, or, that this is simply another sour note in what has been a relatively desultory legislative symphony.

Quotes from various officials on the exit of Schmidt are bland, and of little substance. However, they did highlight the current lay of the land: the work on this issue is far from over. Again via The Hill, Schmidt’s replacement, a one Michael Daniel, “oversaw intelligence agencies and classified Defense Department programs in his post at the Office of Management and Budget.” He has worked on funding for cybersecurity work for the last five years, so he is likely well keyed-in to the issues at hand.

We called the current status of cybersecurity legislation ‘gummed.’ Time will tell if this new leader can move things forward in a constructive fashion.

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