US-CERT Moves in With NCC, NCSC

The group responsible for coordinating U.S. responses to cyber threats is getting new digs.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano will cut the ribbon Friday at a new "unified operations center" in Arlington, Virginia, that will be home to the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT). It will also house the National Coordinating Center for Telecommunications (NCC), and the National Cyber Security Center (NCSC), which coordinates between three-letter government agencies such as the National Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The NCC monitors threats to the telecommunications system and coordinates its restoration in the event of an attack or a natural disaster.

The three groups are being moved into one operations center in order to improve communications between the units, said Amy.Kudwa, a spokeswoman with the DHS. "The model of connecting the dots and sharing information and physically co-locating has been one of the most important lessons learned since 9/11," she said. "This is a similar model of collecting experts who are working on different aspects of a larger issue."

The move is not a merger, however, Kudra added, saying that the agency management structures will remain intact.

DHS is ending its National Cybersecurity Awareness Month with the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

US-CERT, which works with both the private sector and the federal government to coordinate response to computer-based attacks, is looking for new management these days. Its last director, Mischel Kwon left to join EMC's RSA division in August.

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