Increase in cybersecurity research funding advised

The federal government needs to put more dollars into research of civilian cybersecurity, the President's Information Technology Advisory Committee (PITAC) said in a recent report.

Currently, federally supported cybersecurity research and development mostly supports short-term, defense-oriented work rather than long-term research of vulnerabilities in the civilian IT infrastructure, according to PITAC, which is made up of IT leaders from industry and academia.

The committee recommends that federal support for civilian cybersecurity research be increased by $90 million annually at the National Science Foundation and in "substantial amounts" at agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security.

The research should focus on ten areas, including authentication technologies, secure software engineering, mitigation and recovery methodologies, and cyberforensics, PITAC said.

Citing a lack of cybersecurity specialists, PITAC also recommends that the federal government increase its efforts to recruit and retain cybersecurity researchers and students at universities. The goal should be to double the size of the civilian cybersecurity research community by the end of the decade.

Additionally, PITAC said the government should increase support for the quick transition of federally developed cybersecurity technology to the private sector.

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