White House Names Cybersecurity Expert to Lead Response to SolarWinds Hack

WASHINGTON—The White House on Wednesday said it had selected a top National Security Agency official to lead the Biden administration’s response to the sprawling SolarWinds hack, a decision disclosed after growing pressure from lawmakers for more information about the breach.

Anne Neuberger, a senior official at the White House National Security Council, has been in the position since President Biden took office, but administration officials didn’t make her appointment public until Wednesday. She has been leading the handling of the hack fallout since day one of the Biden administration, said Emily Horne, an NSC spokeswoman. Officials didn’t say why Ms. Neuberger’s role leading the response wasn’t disclosed sooner.

Ms. Neuberger is focused on directing federal agencies compromised in the hack toward specific remediation solutions and identifying issues in how the government has responded. She has also worked with the private sector on addressing the attack, which may include “potential executive actions underway,” Ms. Horne said, though she didn’t elaborate. Ms. Neuberger is also focused on launching a study of the SolarWinds breach to learn lessons and to prevent such incidents in the future, Ms. Horne said.

On Tuesday, Sens. Mark Warner and Marco Rubio, the Democratic and Republican leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee, sent a letter to various federal cybersecurity leaders asking for the administration to “empower a clear leader in the United States’ response to the SolarWinds cyber breach that has affected numerous federal agencies.”

The senators also expressed agitation with the lack of details provided thus far to Congress about the hack, which current and former intelligence officials and private-sector cybersecurity experts have widely described as one of the worst hacks on record. The U.S. has blamed Russia for the hack. Moscow has denied involvement.

Source: WSJ – US News

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