US CISA opens first-ever overseas office in London
US federal cyber agency CISA opens first overseas office in London as it expands collaboration with allies and international partners
The United States Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) will open its first-ever overseas office in the UK later this month.
CISA announced that its London attaché office “will serve as a model as CISA matures its international mission to mitigate cybersecurity risks.”
CISA naturally works closely with the UK’s cyber protector, the National Cyber Security Centre, to tackle online threats and provide expertise and advice to businesses and government departments.
CISA was founded in the US in November 2018 and is currently led by Jen Easterly, a veteran of the National Security Council and the military and intelligence community.
Easterly was appointed after former President Trump fired former Executive Director Chris Krebs after he publicly disagreed with Trump for falsely claiming widespread voter fraud in the US presidential election.
An attaché office will now be opened in London, which “will serve as a focal point for international cooperation between CISA, UK government officials and other officials of federal agencies.”
CISA said the attaché office will advance its cybersecurity, critical infrastructure protection and emergency communications missions and leverage the agency’s global network to promote CISA’s four international strategic goals:
Promote operational collaboration Build partner capacity Strengthen collaboration through stakeholder engagement and outreach Shaping the global policy ecosystem
“As America’s cyber defense agency, we know that digital threat actors do not operate neatly within borders,” said CISA Director Jen Easterly. “To help build resilience to domestic threats, we need to think globally.”
“I am thrilled to open CISA’s first international Attaché office in London – true operational collaboration is a global business,” said Easterly.
CISA’s first UK attaché is Julie Johnson, who previously served as Regional Protective Security Advisor for CISA in New York, where she led research into microgrids, communications and the Internet, and physical/cyber convergence.
Johnson was also CISA’s regional leader for federal working groups of several agencies.
Prior to her tenure at CISA, Johnson worked at the Bureau of Intelligence and Research of the United States Department of State, the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, where her work included citizen exchanges , Fulbright Scholarships, IT Center Implementations, and International Training.
An industry expert has welcomed CISA’s decision to open an office in London, pointing out that the US cyber defense agency hopes the move will help it operate across borders in the same way threat actors operate.
“We all know that cybercrime is a global problem; Hostile groups and threat actors are not constrained by national borders,” said Ian McShane, VP of strategy at cybersecurity and cybermonitoring specialist Arctic Wolf. “So the decision by the CISA to open an office in London is an important step to foster collaboration and improve resource sharing between the US and the UK.”
“Strategic tasks such as protecting critical infrastructure and tactical efforts such as preventing cybercriminals from liquidating ill-gotten cryptocurrency require not only practical skills, but also a long-term commitment and game plan,” noted McShane.
“Of course you need 24/7, always-on cyber intelligence — and I don’t mean endless alerts for the security team to troll through. But highly skilled experts to actively analyze and see the real threats behind the data,” said McShane. “The boost in US-UK collaboration, led by the CISA, will transform the digital world where many businesses and citizens of thrive significantly.”