Security Experts:

Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Management & Strategy

White House Names Gregory Touhill as First Federal CISO

The White House today announced that Brigadier General (retired) Gregory J. Touhill has been named the first Federal Chief Information Security Officer (CISO).

The White House today announced that Brigadier General (retired) Gregory J. Touhill has been named the first Federal Chief Information Security Officer (CISO).

Back in February, President Barack Obama unveiled a cybersecurity “national action plan” (CNAP) which called for an overhaul of aging government networks and a high-level commission to boost security awareness. As part of the plan, the White House said it would hire a federal CISO to direct cybersecurity across the federal government.

In a blog post, U.S. CIO Tony Scott and Cybersecurity Coordinator J. Michael Daniel said Touhill will “leverage his considerable experience in managing a range of complex and diverse technical solutions at scale with his strong knowledge of both civilian and military best practices, capabilities, and human capital training, development and retention strategies.”  

White House “Greg will lead a strong team within OMB who have been at the forefront of driving policy and implementation of leading cyber practices across federal agencies, and is the team that conducts periodic cyberstat reviews with federal agencies to insure that implementation plans are effective and achieve the desired outcomes,” Scott and Daniel added.

General Touhill is currently the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications in the Office of Cybersecurity and Communications (CS&C) at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

In addition to the naming Touhill as the first Federal CISO, the White House announced that Grant Schneider has been named as the Acting Deputy CISO. Schneider currently serves as the Director for Cybersecurity Policy on the National Security Council staff at the White House.

“Building on the Cybersecurity Workforce Strategy to identify, recruit, and retain top talent, the CISO will play a central role in helping to ensure the right set of policies, strategies, and practices are adopted across agencies and keeping the Federal Government at the leading edge of 21st century cybersecurity,” the blog post continued.

Earlier this week a report published by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform said the data breaches disclosed by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) last year were a result of culture and leadership failures, and should not be blamed on technology.

“Today’s most advanced cyber threats can no longer be detected by technology alone – experienced, talented cyber threat hunters are now a requirement,” Ryan Shaw, Chief Operating Officer at Raytheon Foreground Security, told SecurityWeek. “The OPM breach, as detailed in the recent Congressional report, is a case in point. The U.S. government has a lot at stake when it comes to protecting data. It’s not a matter of if, but when an attack will strike. Government organizations cannot afford to sit and wait for tool generated alerts; instead, they must proactively hunt for sophisticated and damaging cyberattacks.”

Register Your Interest for SecurityWeek’s 2017 CISO Forum

Written By

For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.

Click to comment

Daily Briefing Newsletter

Subscribe to the SecurityWeek Email Briefing to stay informed on the latest threats, trends, and technology, along with insightful columns from industry experts.

Expert Insights

Related Content

Application Security

Cycode, a startup that provides solutions for protecting software source code, emerged from stealth mode on Tuesday with $4.6 million in seed funding.

Management & Strategy

Industry professionals comment on the recent disruption of the Hive ransomware operation and its hacking by law enforcement.

Management & Strategy

SecurityWeek examines how a layoff-induced influx of experienced professionals into the job seeker market is affecting or might affect, the skills gap and recruitment...

Management & Strategy

Tens of cybersecurity companies have announced cutting staff over the past year, in some cases significant portions of their global workforce.


Twenty-one cybersecurity-related M&A deals were announced in December 2022.

Management & Strategy

Microsoft making a multiyear, multibillion dollar investment in the artificial intelligence startup OpenAI, maker of ChatGPT and other tools.