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N.Y. Governor, NYC Mayor Unveil Joint Cybersecurity Plan

Cybersecurity has become a focus for government agencies around the nation, and on Tuesday, New York announced what it is calling a first-of-its-kind effort to protect against the growing threat.

(TNS) — Cybersecurity has become a focus for governments around the nation, and on Tuesday, New York announced what it is calling a first-of-its-kind effort to protect against the growing threat.

Gov. Kathy Hochul, along with local leaders from around the state, including Mayor Eric Adams, announced the Joint Security Operations Center during a Tuesday afternoon press conference.

"There is a new type of emerging risk that threatens our daily lives, and just as we improved our physical security infrastructure in the aftermath of 9/11, we must now transform how we approach cybersecurity with that same rigor and seriousness," Hochul said.

"Cybersecurity has been a priority for my administration since Day 1, and this command center will strengthen our ability to protect New York's institutions, infrastructure, our citizens and public safety."

Agencies around the state have worked for months to develop a comprehensive plan that will provide a statewide view of the cybersecurity threat, and the best ways to improve coordination among the state's different governments.

In addition to Adams, Hochul launched the project with Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Rochester Mayor Malik Evans, Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano and cyber leaders across the state, according to a media release from Hochul's office.

" New York City is a prime target for those who want to attack our cyber infrastructure to cause destruction. While New York City Cyber Command is already a national model for impeding these threats, it's time our cybersecurity moved to the next level," Adams said.

"We know that when it comes to cyberattacks, the difference between a minor disruption and a catastrophe can be a matter of minutes."

As part of the upcoming budget, Hochul included $62 million for cybersecurity, doubling that value from the prior year, and said $30 million would be available to localities to help bolster their cybersecurity system.

Globally, hacking attacks have become a concern for most international governments. Targets in the United States have included energy infrastructure, defense contractors and the 2014 hack of Sony Pictures.

New York's operation center will be based in Brooklyn with both physical and virtual participants from across the state, and brings the various state and local entities under one umbrella.

Jen Easterly, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), applauded the new entity and said it will help better protect from future attacks.

"In today's globally interconnected world, everyone plays a role in protecting Americans against the threat of cyberattacks," she said.

"Proactive cybersecurity incident response and recovery planning will help mitigate risk and ensure a unified response when an incident happens. Collaboration is at the heart of CISA's mission, and we look forward to supporting this effort as it becomes operational."

© 2022 Staten Island Advance, N.Y. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.