President Obama wants to spend $355 million on cybersecurity in 2010 in order to safeguard against the growing threat of cyberwarfare and other data breaches. The amount is almost $100 million more than is allocated under the current budget. "The threat to federal information technology networks is real, serious, and growing," the budget proposal reads. "To address this threat, the President's 2010 Budget includes substantial funding for cybersecurity efforts; such activities will take an integrated and holistic approach to address current cybersecurity threats, anticipate future threats and continue innovative public-private partnerships." Much of the money will go to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including the DHS’s National Cyber Security Division (NCSD), which “works collaboratively with public, private and international entities to secure cyberspace and America’s cyber assets.”

The budget would also allocate money to the DHS’s Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative (CNCI), which is working to secure government Internet access points, improve DHS monitoring and securing government hardware and software.

Other money will go to the National Security Agency (NSA), responsible for codebreaking and e-spying.

Money will be allocated to other, classified, areas as well.

In December, a two-day simulated cyberwar showed that the US was unprepared for cyberwarfare attacks. Earlier this month, the president ordered a review of US cyber defense policy.

Cybersecurity is a fast-growing market, as cyberwarfare has become increasingly common, and government agencies in the US and abroad are struggling to develop security measures to guard against such attacks as occurred last August in Georgia.

It is believed that the cybersecurity market could produce more than $10 billion in contracts in the next five years.

By Mark Alvarez