An Inspector General audit flaming the FBI for a lack of cybersecurity skills may prove to be an opportunity for the agency, which is set to receive an additional $18.6 million to create 42 new positions, including 14 special agents, to work directly on combating cyber threats.

A bill signed into law by President Obama Nov. 18 allocated the funds for the additional positions, as well as providing more money to help states fight cyber crime and more than doubling funding for the Federal Cyber Service’s Scholarships for Service.

The IG report offered a harsh assessment, despite the fact that over the past year the FBI has had several high-level cyber wins, including working with law enforcement in Estonia to break up one of the largest Internet crime schemes, which infected more than 4 million computers with malware.

The creation of new special agents to address cyber threats points directly to one of the recommendations of the IG report. Agents themselves noted the difficulty of the FBI’s system of rotating agents through field assignments. Cyber resources were spread thin by having cyber squads in each field office, as well ? many of those offices staffed by agents who said they didn’t feel qualified.

Even as the Intelligence Community tightens its belts and prepares for a budget crunch, investment in cyber, including cybersecurity positions, grows.

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