NIST to get new lead Internet policy advisor

Newcomer brings think-tank experience

Ari Schwartz, vice president and chief operating officer at the privacy advocacy group Center for Democracy and Technology, will be joining the National Institute of Standards and Technology at the end of the month as senior Internet policy advisor.

The position is new but Schwartz will be assuming much of the role that cybersecurity advisor W. Curt Barker has been playing on the Commerce Department’s Internet Policy Task Force. Barker, who formerly headed the NIST IT Lab’s Cybersecurity Division, will be spending more time at NIST headquarters in Gaithersburg, Md.

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 In addition to his role in the Internet Policy Task Force, Schwartz also will work with NIST Director Pat Gallagher on interagency working groups, including the White House Office of Science and Technology's subcommittee on standards.

“It’s a very exciting time to be at NIST,” Schwartz said. “There are so many new Internet projects at the NIST IT Lab,” and both government and industry increasingly are looking to the agency for solutions to Internet security, privacy and policy issues. “It’s a great opportunity for me.”

Schwartz has spent 13 years, or “most of my adult life,” at CDT, and he said it has been a privilege for him to work there. “It’s a great organization, with a collaborative approach to building consensus,” he said. “There are few organizations that do that.”

His work with CDT has involved him in federal policy issues. The organization was a driver for the federal law requiring privacy impact assessments for agency programs and Schwartz recently worked with the Office of Management and Budget in developing policies for agencies in tracking online identities of visitors to government Web sites.

Gallagher said Schwartz’s experience will be an asset to NIST.

"We're delighted to have Ari working with us,” he said. “His deep experience with the cybersecurity, privacy and broad IT communities will be very valuable as NIST continues to address high visibility IT research and policy issues."

About the Author

William Jackson is a Maryland-based freelance writer.


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