State Department's top cyber official to leave post

State Department's top cyber official to leave post
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The State Department’s top cyber official will leave his position at the end of this month. 

Chris Painter, appointed the department’s coordinator for cyber issues in 2011 during the Obama administration, will leave the State Department at the end of July.

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The news was first reported by Politico and confirmed by a State Department official Monday afternoon. 

“After six and a half years of exceptional service, Coordinator Painter’s extended detail comes to an end at the end of July,” the official told The Hill in an email. “The State Department will continue to address and prioritize these important cyber issues.” 

In his position, Painter is responsible for coordinating the United States diplomatic efforts to advance cybersecurity, including by promoting norms of responsible behavior by states in cyberspace. Painter has launched government-to-government “cyber dialogues” with other countries to help reduce cyber threats and crime. 

For example, he traveled to Israel last month along with other top U.S. officials to attend an annual cybersecurity conference in Tel Aviv. During that conference, the White House announced a new bilateral cybersecurity working group between the U.S. and Israel. 

Before being appointed to the State Department post in February 2011, Painter served as senior director for cyberpolicy in the National Security Council under former President Obama. He also held cyber-related positions at the Department of Justice and the FBI. 

Painter’s exit comes as many political appointee positions remain unfilled in President Trump’s State Department.