The Department of Homeland Security on Oct. 30 announced launch of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Supply Chain Risk Management Task Force, which the agency said is charged with developing “consensus recommendations” to identify and manage risk to the global ICT supply chain.

The task force is being sponsored by DHS’ recently created National Risk Management Center, and DHS said it will serve as the “main private sector point of entry” for the agency’s Cyber Supply Chain Risk Management Program (C-SCRM).  The task force is jointly chaired by DHS and chairs of the existing Information Technology and Communications Sector Coordinating Councils.   Co-chairs are Robert Mayer, senior vice president for cybersecurity at trade group USTelecom, and John Miller, vice president for policy and law at tech trade group ITI.

Membership of the task force will include representatives from “an impressive roster” of companies in the IT and communications sectors, and will hold its first meeting “in the coming weeks,” DHS said.  After the initial meeting, the task force will publish its membership and work streams.

Christopher Krebs, who runs DHS’ National Protection and Programs Directorate, said in a statement, “The nature of supply chain threats, because they can encompass a product’s entire life cycle and often involve hardware, make them particularly challenging to defend against. Government and industry have a shared interest and thus a shared responsibility in identifying and mitigating these threats in partnership.  The Task Force will seek holistic solutions across a broad set of stakeholders to develop near-and long-term strategies to address supply chain risks.”

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John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.