Florida lawmakers assigned $30 million this year for cybersecurity measures, however months later, not a penny has been spent.
Florida’s chief information officer, Jamie Grant, told lawmakers that his office is so short-staffed that it hasn’t come up with a plan to spend the money.
Millions for training, threat assessments, infrastructure hardening and software have been on hold seven months after his office requested the money.
Months of high-level departures in the office, have alarmed observers who say the state was already short-staffed.
Grant was Gov. Ron DeSantis’ pick last to lead the Florida Digital Service, the state’s first line of defense against cyberthreats for Florida’s $105 billion government. Grant is an attorney from Tampa who had little experience or training in technology.
Grant has lost two chief information security officers, the chief data officer, the enterprise architect, the chief operations officer and half of the state’s new cybersecurity team.
Several quit abruptly without giving notice, and several bristled under Grant’s management style.
Grant believes he needs to request all $30 million at once, and he can’t do that because the few people he has are busy responding to cyberthreats.
“One of the things our team’s challenged with is just, with the limited number of people, having to do incident response and coordinate with the policy team on the operational work plan,” he told a House committee.