Beside the obvious, that State eliminated this program and is now re-establishing it, the question is “why?”
Yes, a position and a support staff is needed to coordinate efforts of monitoring and perhaps controlling dual-use cyber technologies and cyber weapons technologies, globally.
The question would be, then, why was the position eliminated in the first place?
Have there been recent developments that the need is suddenly apparent?
A staff of 80, funded at $20.8 million dollars looks like yet another high-dollar project competing for the same pitiful few cyber experts in the DC area.
While I applaud efforts to gain a grasp of the out-of-control cybersecurity realm, I must wonder when and if the other low-tech foreign information warfare will ever be addressed on a Whole-of-Government or even a partial basis?
By Sean Lyngaas
June 5, 2019
The State Department has sent to Congress a long-awaited plan to reestablish a
cybersecurity-focused bureau it says is key to supporting U.S. diplomatic
efforts in cyberspace.
The State Department’s new plan, obtained by CyberScoop, would create the Bureau
of Cyberspace Security and Emerging Technologies (CSET) to “lead U.S. government
diplomatic efforts to secure cyberspace and its technologies, reduce the
likelihood of cyber conflict, and prevail in strategic cyber competition.”
The new bureau, with a proposed staff of 80 and projected budget of $20.8
million, would be led by a Senate-confirmed coordinator and
“ambassador-at-large” with the equivalent status of an assistant secretary of
State, who would report to the Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and
International Security. The idea comes nearly two years after then-Secretary of
State Rex Tillerson announced he would abolish the department’s cybersecurity
coordinator position and put its support staff under the department’s economic
CSET would “unify the policy functions and align national security
responsibilities related to cybersecurity and emerging technologies with the
department’s international security efforts,” and “promote the department’s
long-term technical capacity in these areas,” states the document, which the
State Department submitted this week to the House Foreign Affairs Committee.