Greg Touhill named first federal CISO

Grant Schneider was also tapped to serve as acting deputy chief information security officer.

The White House has named its first federal chief information security officer six months after it announced plans to create the position. 

Retired Brig. Gen. Gregory Touhill has been appointed the nation’s first CISO, according to a White House blog post co-authored Thursday by U.S. CIO Tony Scott and Cybersecurity Coordinator Michael Daniel.

Up until his appointment, Touhill had been serving as deputy assistant secretary for cybersecurity and communications in the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Cybersecurity and Communications.

The position was created as part of the Cybersecurity National Action Plan, the overarching White House cybersecurity plan that establishes short- and long-term goals aimed at strengthening networks inside and outside government against hackers, protecting privacy, and raising Americans’ awareness of digital security measures.


In his role, Touhill will be leading cyber practices across federal agencies, including those that conduct “periodic CyberStat reviews with federal agencies to insure that implementation plans are effective and achieve the desired outcomes,” according to the blog post.

Additionally, the White House named Grant Schneider acting deputy CISO. He currently serves as the director for cybersecurity policy on the National Security Council.

At DHS, Touhill has spent time defending the department’s $6 billion governmentwide cybersecurity system known as Einstein. While in the past he has admitted the technology is outdated, he said earlier this year the program was beginning to fulfill its potential as a vital security tool.

Recently, Touhill sat down with FedScoop TV to talk about protecting the federal government’s networks. Watch that video below.

Greg Otto

Written by Greg Otto

Greg Otto is Editor-in-Chief of CyberScoop, overseeing all editorial content for the website. Greg has led cybersecurity coverage that has won various awards, including accolades from the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. Prior to joining Scoop News Group, Greg worked for the Washington Business Journal, U.S. News & World Report and WTOP Radio. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Temple University.

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