New York's Andrew Garbarino takes helm of House's cybersecurity subcommittee

New York Republican Andrew Garbarino has been chosen as the new chairman of the House's Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection and Innovation Subcommittee.

With Republicans taking control of the House, experts were eagerly waiting for leadership to pick the successor to Democratic Rep. Yvette D. Clarke, another New Yorker who led the subcommittee when Democrats had the majority. The panel is part of the Homeland Security Committee, which has Rep. Mark Green (R-TN) as its new chair.

Garbarino previously served as the top Republican on the subcommittee and introduced a bill last year — the Cybersecurity Grants for Schools Act of 2022 — that would allocate federal grants to state governments to provide a stronger cybersecurity curriculum to students.

The congressman also made waves in November after he sent a letter to the White House demanding more information about the “Continuity of the Economy” plan, which will address how the American economy would be “restored” in the event of a cyberattack.

“Cyberattacks are the preeminent threat of our time, impacting every sector of our economy — from the energy sector to financial services. Our foreign adversaries have grown more advanced making cybersecurity the next arena in which we must build out our national defenses,” he said in a statement to The Record.

He pledged to work with CISA and foster a “strong partnership ... between the public and private sectors in order to face rising threats and strengthen our national cybersecurity posture.”

The subcommittee oversees programs and issue areas related to the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) mission in cybersecurity, infrastructure protection, and more.

It is tasked with addressing collaboration on cybersecurity across the 16 critical infrastructure sectors and the sharing of cyberthreat information between the private sector and federal, state, and local partners.

The panel also aims to “increase DHS’s ability to protect federal networks, improve the protection of our Nation’s critical assets, and ensure the essential development of technology solutions for emerging threats,” its website reads.

Rep. Laurel Lee (R-FL) was chosen as vice chair and several other members of Congress from Florida, Texas and Mississippi were chosen to sit on the subcommittee.

In a statement announcing the new appointments, Green criticized his predecessors for failing to hold U.S. adversaries accountable for “numerous attacks” on the country’s critical infrastructure. 

Cybersecurity is one of the few remaining issues within the government that typically gets addressed with bipartisan support, with multiple bills passing last year that had backing from both Democrats and Republicans. 

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Jonathan Greig

Jonathan Greig

is a Breaking News Reporter at Recorded Future News. Jonathan has worked across the globe as a journalist since 2014. Before moving back to New York City, he worked for news outlets in South Africa, Jordan and Cambodia. He previously covered cybersecurity at ZDNet and TechRepublic.