The Obama administration gives the Department of Homeland Security approval to hire as many as 1,000 cyber-security experts during the next three years. According to DHS, officials are aiming to fill a number of different positions in areas such as vulnerability detection and network and systems engineering.
The Department of Homeland Security has gotten the OK to hire as many as
1,000 new IT pros during the next three years to bolster cyber-security.
DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano made the announcement Oct. 1 during remarks
tied to the start of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. The new hiring
authority is the result of a collaborative effort between DHS, the Office of
Personnel Management, and the Office of Management and Budget.
"Effective cyber-security requires all partners-individuals,
communities, government entities and the private sector-to work together to
protect our networks and strengthen our cyber-resiliency," Napolitano
said. "This new hiring authority will enable DHS to recruit the best
cyber-analysts, developers and engineers in the world to serve their country by
leading the nation's defenses against cyber-threats."
The list of positions to be filled covers areas such as cyber-risk
and strategic analysis,
cyber-incident response, and vulnerability
detection and assessment.
The need to hire more security pros has been noted by others, such as in a report
from the Partnership for Public Service
and consulting company Booz Allen
Hamilton released in July. In that report, the authors outlined a number of
problems involved in recruiting and hiring cyber-security pros, as well as
strategies for resolving the problems.
President Obama declared May 29 that his administration was making
cyber-security a national priority.
As part of that effort, the president
authorized a 60-day assessment of the government's cyber-security. In addition,
he announced the creation of the position of national cyber-coordinator, but it
has not yet been filled.
Napolitano emphasized the importance of partnerships between the public and
private sectors in protecting the country's cyber-infrastructure. DHS officials
said they do not anticipate needing to fill all 1,000 slots.
"This is impressive and clearly an indication that DHS has won
confidence in the White House to lead the federal government's cyber-security
response," said Roger Thornton, CTO of