February 10, 2016
President Barack Obama on Tuesday sought a surge in funding to counter cyber security threats, as his top intelligence official warned Congress that computer attacks were among the most imminent security challenges facing the United States.
In his fiscal 2017 budget proposal, Obama asked for $19 billion for cyber security across the U.S. government, an increase of $5 billion over this year
While the White House’s overall fiscal plan faces tough going in the Republican-controlled Congress, increased cyber security funding has won bipartisan support of lawmakers in the past.
The request comes as the Obama administration has struggled to address the growing risk posed by criminals and nation states in the digital world.
In Congress, Obama’s director of national intelligence, James Clapper, warned that cyber threats “could lead to widespread vulnerabilities in civilian infrastructures and U.S. government systems.”
The Obama initiative calls for a more than one-third increase from the $14 billion appropriated this year and would include $3.1 billion for technology modernization at various federal agencies.