DHS Opens New National Cybersecurity, Communications Center

ARLINGTON, Va.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today opened the new National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC)-a 24-hour, DHS-led coordinated watch and warning center that will improve national efforts to address threats and incidents affecting the nation’s critical information technology and cyber infrastructure.

“Securing America’s cyber infrastructure requires a coordinated and flexible system to detect threats and communicate protective measures to our federal, state, local, and private sector partners and the public,” said Secretary Napolitano. “Consolidating our cyber and communications operations centers within the NCCIC will enhance our ability to effectively mitigate risks and respond to threats.”

The new, state-of-the-art facility reflects the shared priority of President Obama and Secretary Napolitano to bolster information sharing and incident response in order to protect and secure the nation’s cyber networks and infrastructure.

The NCCIC provides an integrated incident response facility to mitigate risks that could disrupt or degrade critical information technology functions and services, while allowing for flexibility in handling traditional voice and more modern data networks.

The new unified operations center combines two of DHS’ operational organizations: the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT), which leads a public-private partnership to protect and defend the nation’s cyber infrastructure; and the National Coordinating Center for Telecommunications (NCC), the operational arm of the National Communications System.

In addition, the NCCIC will integrate the efforts of the National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC), which coordinates operations among the six largest federal cyber centers; the DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis and private sector partners.

The NCCIC was created at the recommendation of the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee, the Government Accountability Office and a joint industry-government working group, which together emphasized the need for collocation, integration, and interoperability among existing cyber and communications incident response mechanisms.

Today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the culmination of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month-highlighting the shared responsibility among all individuals, the private sector and state, local and federal partners to counter the threat of cyber attacks.

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