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June 17, 2021

King: Confirmation of Inglis as Inaugural Cyber Director “Historic Step” to Confront Growing Cyber Challenges

WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine), co-chair of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission (CSC), today applauded the unanimous Senate confirmation of Chris Inglis to serve as the nation’s first-ever National Cyber Director. The newly-created National Cyber Director position was a key recommendation of the Cyber Solarium Commission, and was one of the 25 CSC recommendations included in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2021. Last week, Senator King introduced Inglis, who also served as a CSC Commissioner, during his nomination hearing before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. At the time, Senator King stated, “I honestly believe, based upon three years of extensive engagement on this issue with people across the country, he is the single best person to fill this role.”

“Cyberattacks are becoming a weapon of choice for nation-states and criminals alike in the 21st century – and as an open, widely-connected society, the United States has asymmetrical vulnerabilities that it must work to address. In recent weeks, America has been hit by a number of disruptive cyberattacks, and the only thing more chilling than the steady stream of attacks is the knowledge that in the wrong hands, the effects could be far more devastating,” said Senator King. “We are receiving wake-up call after wake-up call that America needs to bolster its cyberdefenses. Today, the Senate took a historic step toward confronting this challenge by confirming Chris Inglis as the country’s first-ever National Cyber Director. Chris is an intelligent and talented leader, who possesses both the experience and the disposition to lead a government-wide effort to strengthen our cybersecurity. I thank President Biden for selecting him – after working beside him for years in the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, I believe he is the best person for the job, and I look forward to our continued partnership on this urgent issue.

“In the days ahead, I will continue working with my Congressional colleagues to ensure Chris has the resources he needs to succeed in this vital task – including providing adequate funding to build out the Office of the National Cyber Director and giving him a talented partner in this fight by confirming Jen Easterly to serve as Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.”

As a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Senate Armed Services Committee, chair of the Subcommittee on Strategic Forces. and co-chair of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, Senator King is recognized as one of Congress’s leading experts on cyberdefense and a strong advocate for a forward-thinking cyberstrategy that emphasizes layered cyberdeterrence. King and his fellow CSC Commissioners from the legislative branch have previously praised Inglis’s experience and vision, stating that “there is no one more qualified than Chris” for this vital role.  His expertise and national security insights were seen most recently on CNN’s “State of the Union” this past Sunday, live from Millinocket, Maine. The CSC was established by statute in the 2019 NDAA, officially launched in April 2019, and will continue to execute its statutory mission through December 2021. The Commission’s report and continued work seeks to strengthen America’s posture in cyberspace and identify opportunities to improve our national preparedness to defend ourselves against cyberattacks.

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