Outgoing Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano warned her successor on Tuesday to move quickly to prepare for an inevitable large-scale cyberattack against the United States.
Napolitano, delivering her farewell address at the National Press Club, said her successor should move fast to strengthen the nation’s cyber defenses.
“Our country will, at some point, face a major cyber event that will have a serious effect on our lives, our economy and the everyday functioning of our society,” said Napolitano.
“While we have built systems, protections and a framework to identify attacks and intrusions, share information with the private sector and across government, and develop plans and capabilities to mitigate the damage, more must be done, and quickly.”
“For every attack we experience, every threat we face and every piece of intelligence we come across, we learn; we assess our preparations and capabilities; we make changes; we become more flexible in the actions we take; and we get stronger and more nimble,” said Napolitano, who is leaving her post to become the head of the University of California school system.
Only 10 years old, the Department of Homeland Security is the largest agency in the country, encompassing a wide range of federal responsibilities and offices that range from immigration and border enforcement to port and aviation security.
Napolitano said it was imperative that her future successor continues to “move to a more risk-based, intelligence-driven security system” with the nation’s approach to aviation security.
She also highlighted chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear security measures; securing large-scale public events, such as the Inauguration and the national party conventions; and the Coast Guard, as areas that will need continued attention under the department’s new leadership.
Full article: Napolitano warns large-scale cyberattack on US is inevitable (Video) (The Hill)