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Navy Wants to Appoint New Assistant Secretary To Lead Cybersecurity

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The U.S. Navy wants to appoint a new assistant secretary who will lead coordination with the service’s industrial base and efforts to protect U.S. networks and deter adversaries in cyberspace, USNI News reported Tuesday. 

Richard Spencer, secretary of the Navy and a 2019 Wash100 winner, proposed the new role at a recent meeting with the Senate Armed Services Committee. He said the service is working on a business plan to improve cybersecurity for both the naval forces and industrial base. 

The proposal comes one month after Spencer released the Navy Cybersecurity Readiness Review that highlighted its supplier’s vulnerabilities.

“The department has relied on long-standing security constructs based on information sharing and self-reporting to inform it of its supplier’s vulnerabilities and breaches. That after-the-fact system has demonstrably failed,” the report stated. 

Spencer said the Navy seeks additional authority to improve how it works with its industrial base to protect data with both defensive and offensive cyber tools.