June 10, 2009

Gillibrand And Arcuri Call for Newly Created Cyber Security Czar to Visit Rome Labs

New Cyber Czar Will Lead Nation’s Efforts to Ensure Nation’s Network Security

Washington, D.C. - After news that the FBI's computer and email system shut down due to a far-reaching virus, on May 29, President Obama created the position of cyber security czar responsible for protecting America's network security. Today, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Michael Arcuri called on the Administration to send the future appointee to tour the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) in Rome, New York. Gillibrand and Arcuri toured Rome Labs and saw firsthand state-of-the-art research lab which designs cutting edge science and technologies leading the development of warfighting information technologies for air, space, and cyberspace force.

"Right here in the Mohawk Valley, Rome Labs is at the forefront of our cyber security fight," said Senator Gillibrand. "President Obama has made a great step forward to make our internet systems more secure by appointing a cyber security czar and initiating a comprehensive review of our cyber security risks.  One of the first things our new cyber security czar should do is tour Rome Labs and learn about the benefits of their cutting edge research.  Rome Labs can play a critical role in ensuring our nation's network security."

"Rome Labs has the experience and expertise in the field of cyber security to assist the new Cyber-Security Czar and protect our nation from cyber-attacks," Rep. Arcuri said, "I join Senator Gillibrand in urging the new Cyber Security Czar to visit for a first-hand look at what Rome Labs can do to advance this critical mission. I also want to commend the President for taking the necessary steps to protect our nation from the very real threat of cyber attacks."

Rome Labs is the Air Force's headquarters for its Information Directorate and is charged with researching and developing cyber securities and information technologies for the Air Force. With an overall budget of $719 million and computer scientists, electrical engineers, computer engineers, and mathematicians as the majority of its employees, Rome Lab's cyber security and cyber operation division defends, protects, and keeps surveillance on information systems and networks.

As the new cyber czar begins his or her new role in online security, Gillibrand and Arcuri urged the Administration to learn more about the work at Rome Labs.  This Information Directorate is a much needed operation to keep U.S. cyber security risks low. They encouraged the future cyber czar to take advantage of this existing research to not only continue to protect our online systems but to fix this growing threat to our national security.