WASHINGTON, May 28, 2010 –Sameer Bhalotra, formerly a staffer with the Senate’s Select Intelligence Committee, was confirmed as the White House’s Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt’s new deputy.
Bhalotra’s hiring is expected to pave the way for the White House Operations Network to become a permanent federal office. Bhalotra’s experience in cybersecurity and classified work is also expected to be an asset. James Lewis, a cybersecurity expert and senior fellow at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies calling the hiring decision “a real coup for [White House Cybersecurity Coordinator] Howard Schmidt.”
Among his other credentials, Bhalotra was responsible for the cybersecurity budget in the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, and served as a member of the Commission on Cybersecurity.
Alan Paller, director of research at the SANS Institute, a security training organization, praised the decision, calling Bhalotra “Probably the most technically tuned-in staffer on the Hill.”