New York to Get Statewide Cybersecurity Center

New York State is creating a Joint Security Operations Center (JSOC) to centralize and enhance its cyber-defenses.

The center was announced by state governor Kathy Hochul on Tuesday at a joint conference held with the mayors of New York City, Albany, Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers.

Hochul said that New York was forming a statewide team to “thwart” potential cyber-attacks. She added that the State would be hiring 70 “highly trained individuals to work in a facility with 117 desktop computers.”

A new unit in Downtown Brooklyn has been earmarked as the headquarters for the new center, which will be crewed by experts from federal and state law enforcement entities, representatives from local and county governments and members of NYC Cyber Command (NYC3).

“This is going to be the nerve center for our cyber operation,” said Hochul. “We will bring all the talent together, the resources, the data- sharing, that has been going on in silos for far too long.” 

The governor said that the center would improve New York’s ability to prevent cyber-attacks and respond to any attacks that could not be blocked. 

“This will help shore up our defenses, identify our weaknesses, and protect from any vulnerabilities,” said Hochul.

The governor went on to announce that she is proposing that New York invest $61.9m to improve its cyber-defenses. Should her proposal be approved, it will represent a doubling of the State’s previous funding allocations for making cybersecurity improvements. 

Hochul said the investments would help ensure that if one part of the network is attacked, the State can isolate and protect the rest of the system.

Commissioner for the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Jackie Bray said: “Thanks to governor Kathy Hochul’s leadership, the State and our government partners are establishing a first in the nation Joint Security Operations Center to bolster our collective cybersecurity efforts.”

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency director Jen Easterly praised New York’s actions on social media.

She wrote: “Collaboration between local, state, federal & private sector players is EXACTLY how we successfully ensure the resilience of our businesses & orgs. Wayto go NY!”

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