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Lynn Accepts Cyber Award, Says Window for Cyber Action Closing

Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn, Photo: Defense.gov

Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn took home top honors among government cybersecurity leaders at a Washington, D.C., IT-award event this week.

Lynn, who was recognized for his efforts to defend military and commercial IT infrastructure and his work shepherding through an information- and resource-sharing agreement between the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security, accepted the Eagle Award for government before a crowd of industry and government leaders numbering a thousand.

But Lynn didn’t waste time basking in the accolades, instead focusing his remarks on a message he has focused on during his tenure at the Pentagon: much work remains in the cyber realm and the window for action is closing.

The threat in cyberspace is “moving up the ladder from exploitation to disruption. … We have not seen much destruction in terms of cyber threats, but we will,” he said, according to an Armed Forces Press Service report. “We have a window at this point where the most malicious threats haven’t been joined with the most malicious actors, but that will happen.”

Future cyber efforts must take a page from the historic agreement between between DoD and DHS, in terms of sharing critical information and resources. For example, Lynn said, efforts must include partnerships between the public and private sectors.

“That cross-fertilization is critical,” the deputy secretary said. “We are not going to solve this problem as a government-only problem; private industry is not going to be able to solve it alone.”

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