CIOs underline top 9 security efforts for 2001

CIOs underline top 9 security efforts for 2001

By Susan M. Menke

GCN Staff

Of the $2 billion the administration requested for cybersecurity in fiscal 2001, the Chief Information Officers Council has tagged $48.3 million as must-have money for systems security initiatives.

The CIOs contend that the nine projects the funds would support are needed to form 'a solid, day-to-day foundation' for agencies' security efforts.

'No matter how much we spend on security, our systems that are connected to the Internet will be vulnerable to dedicated, sophisticated hackers for the foreseeable future,' former Energy Department CIO John M. Gilligan, Commerce Department CIO Roger W. Baker and State Department CIO Fernando Burbano noted in a memorandum to Congress.

The three head the council's Committee on Security, Privacy and Critical Infrastructure Protection.

When Gilligan, now at the Air Force, testified this month before the House Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Management, Information and Technology, lawmakers were receptive.

'They clearly took note,' said Andy Staton, a staff member in Energy's CIO office. Rep. Steve Horn (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Turner (D-Texas) 'said they would weigh in and make sure the programs were funded,' Staton said.

The CIO Council's recently launched Web repository, at, solicits and shares the best security practices that agencies have found. The site currently lists 10 best security practices and provides places for visitors to leave feedback.

The council and the General Services Administration also are working to encourage more security incident reporting to the Federal Computer Incident Response Center.

The nine projects, the CIOs said, are cross-government and do not seek to replace existing agency programs but rather to build on them.

Don't cut these funds, CIOs urge

' $11.2 million for National Science Foundation information security scholarships in exchange for students' public service after graduation

' $10 million for Federal Computer Incident Response Capability, a single point of contact for civilian agency reporting of security incidents

' $7 million for the Treasury Department's work on a Federal Bridge Certification Authority for peer-to-peer interoperability of digital certificates across agencies

' $6 million for Commerce's Critical Infrastructure Assurance Office, the interagency coordinator of Presidential Decision Directive 63

' $5 million for a Critical Infrastructure Protection Expert Review Team based at the National Institute of Standards and Technology to assist small agencies that lack internal security organizations

' $5 million for a NIST study of critical infrastructure protection technologies

' $3 million for the CERT Coordination Center supported by GSA and the Justice and Defense departments at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh

' $600,000 for the CIO Council's Web repository of best security practices

' $500,000 for NIST support to the CIO Council and GSA


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