24 House Dems ask State Department to keep cyber office

A group of 24 U.S. House democrats wrote Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in support of the State Department's Office of the Coordinator for Cyber Issues in a July 21 letter, after recent media reports Mr. Tillerson planned to shut down the office.

After Chris Painter, coordinator for cyber issues in the State Department, stepped down from his post last week, multiple media outlets reported Mr. Tillerson was planning to close the office and integrate it with the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, reports The Hill. In their letter, the Democrats asked Mr. Tillerson to appoint a new coordinator and maintain the office as a separate entity since its closure would leave the U.S. the only major country without a lead cybersecurity diplomat.

"Cybersecurity is one area where bipartisan agreements on policy and strategy still exist. At a time when the world is more interconnected than ever and we face constant cyber threats from state actors, it is vital that we retain a high-level diplomatic role to report directly to the secretary on global cybersecurity," the letter reads.

Click here to read the full letter.

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