- A bipartisan group of cybersecurity and technology industry executives urged key Congressional leaders to support funding for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, amid concerns that budget cuts could derail efforts to protect critical infrastructure and federal government networks.
- The group, led by Tenable Chair and CEO Amit Yoran, warns that cuts to the fiscal 2024 budget would place the U.S. at greater risk of an attack given growing threat activity from criminal hackers and state-linked adversaries affiliated with Russia, the People’s Republic of China and other rogue adversaries.
- “The U.S. is a cyber target and we must not stymie the progress that has been made to secure our most critical national assets,” according to the letter, which was posted on Yoran’s LinkedIn Thursday.
CISA has faced rising backlash from Republican House members in recent months related to the agency’s work to combat disinformation related to election security.
“We have heard there may still be calls for significant cuts to CISA and we remain concerned that cuts like these could undermine CISA’s network defense and critical infrastructure coordination mission,” Tenable officials said via email.
Eric Goldstein, CISA’s executive assistant director for cybersecurity, told a House Homeland Security Committee hearing that the proposed cuts would greatly harm CISA’s ability to monitor threats against federal networks.
“We would not be able to sustain that visibility with that significant of a budget cut, and our adversaries would unequivocally exploit those gaps,” Goldstein said.
Mark Montgomery, senior director of the Center on Cyber and Technology Innovation at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told Cybersecurity Dive that such proposed cuts could increase the risk of attacks linked to software vulnerabilities — and put national security at risk.
“Cuts to CISA are counterproductive,” Montgomery said via email. “CISA has been authorized and resourced very carefully by Congress over the past five years, on a bipartisan basis, to establish its pivotal role as the nation's civilian cyber defense agency.”
The letter was signed by a number of leading cybersecurity leaders, corporate CISOs and other industry executives, including Nikesh Arora, chair and CEO of Palo Alto Networks; George Kurtz, co-founder and CEO of CrowdStrike; and Ron Green, CSO at Mastercard.