Group calls on government to promote cybersecurity R&D

The Cyber Security Industry Alliance (CSIA), a coalition of security vendors, is urging the federal government to make cybersecurity research and development a priority.

The White House and Congress should work together to create a 10-year cybersecurity R&D plan and increase federal funding in order to protect the nation's information infrastructure, the group said in a report issued Monday.

CSIA also bemoaned the dissolution of the President's Information Technology Advisory Committee (PITAC), which had also urged the federal government to put more emphasis on cybersecurity R&D.

"The crisis in leadership in cybersecurity R&D will hold long-term implications for the U.S. if it is not addressed soon. The reasons for the recent lapse of the PITAC remain unclear, but its dissolution is a blow to the R&D community," CSIA Executive Director Paul Kurtz said in a statement.

The group's other recommendations include designating an entity to coordinate cybersecurity efforts of the government and private industry. The new assistant secretary for Cyber Security and Telecommunications in the Department of Homeland Security is a "logical choice," for that role, according to CSIA.

In creating a 10-year cybersecurity R&D plan, the government should adopt the priorities listed by PITAC in its 2005 report, according to CSIA. PITAC's list includes authentication technologies, secure software engineering, and cyber forensics.

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