New cybersecurity coordinator 'has president's ear'

The government needs to be investing more in the research and development of cybersecurity tools, said Howard Schmidt, the new cybersecurity coordinator in the White House.

 In one of his first public appearances since taking the job last month, Schmidt said he’s been meeting with members of Congress and heads of agencies, although he offered few specifics of what cybersecurity legislation should include. He spoke today at the State of the Net conference.

The administration has been criticized for not moving fast enough to create a cybersecurity strategy for the government.

“There’s the perception out there that things aren’t getting done,” he said. “That can’t be farther from the truth.”

He said he “has the president’s ear” when it comes to coordinating efforts across agencies.

“There are no silver bullets,” he said. “But we have tremendous support from the Hill, agencies and private sector….We are better positioned than ever to face these threats.”