A former NSA and White House official has been appointed to lead the Agency for Cyber Security and Infrastructure Security (CISA) at a time when ransomware and other types of cyber-attacks are on the rise. The Senate has named Jen Easterly as the second person to head the DHS agency, according to Politico. CISA provides cyber security tools and incident response services to government networks, and provides security advice to infrastructure operators and businesses.
Politico earlier reported that CISA is struggling to deal with one cybercrisis after another and that the agency does not have enough staff and too much work. He had to face multiple incursions in the middle of a pandemic as bad actors attacked the healthcare industry ransomware, forcing them to pay to prevent delays that could cost lives. CISA also had to respond to the mass Hack SolarWinds that the government blames Russia as well as the ransomware attacks Colonial pipeline, a software giant Kaseya and meat supplier JBS.
Easter not only has to lead efforts in response to ongoing cyber attacks, but also falls on its shoulders to ensure that CISA gains the ability to counter new threats as soon as they arise. Prior to his appointment as the new head of CISA, Easter spent years as the No. 2 official in the NSA’s counterterrorism department, and was also the senior director of the National Security Counterterrorism Council under former President Barack Obama.
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