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DHS Cyber Expert Reitinger Departs

Philip Reitinger, DHS; Photo: dhs.gov

Department of Homeland Security cyber expert Phil Reitinger will step down from his post June 3, Federal News Radio reports, citing government and industry sources.

Reitinger, the deputy undersecretary of DHS’ National Protection and Programs Directorate, was appointed in June 2009 after serving as chief trustworthy infrastructure strategist at Microsoft.

“I have decided that the time has come for me to move on from the Department,” Reitinger wrote in an e-mail to agency employees and obtained by National Journal. “With significant progress having been made in activities across NPPD, with growing recognition of DHS’s roles and authorities, and the cybersecurity legislative proposal now delivered to the Hill, it’s a logical point for me to leave the Department of Homeland Security and allow the team that we have developed together to carry our initiatives forward.  One of our greatest successes is the high-caliber team we have all built, and I have no doubt of your growing capabilities and continued success.”

Reitinger’s departure comes after high-profile cybersecurity developments in the administration over the past week.

Last week, the White House introduced a plan for the cybersecurity for federal IT systems that placed the responsibility and authority for federal cyber efforts in the hands of DHS officials.

Also under Reitinger’s tenure, DHS opened the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, a 24-hour watch and warning center to tackle threats to critical infrastructure, and he helped oversee a resources- and information-sharing agreement between DHS and the Defense Department.

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