Ron Sharon

Cybersecurity and Technology Leader

New Mexico appoints cybersecurity advisor to protect infrastructure

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As concern rises that Russia may turn to cyberwarfare to lash out against countries imposing economic sanctions in response to its invasion of Ukraine, New Mexico’s governor has appointed a cybersecurity senior advisor. 

On Friday, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s office announced that Annie Winterfield Manriquez had been named senior advisor for cybersecurity and critical infrastructure. Her role is described as working with government agencies and the private sector to boost awareness of cyber attacks and set standards and practices for guarding against them and reporting incidents.

The governor said the Biden Administration is recommending that states prepare for potential cyber attacks targeting public agencies, financial targets or even critical infrastructure. 

Manriquez has worked with the nonprofit MITRE Corporation, where she led a department that assisted White House agencies in improving cyber systems. She is also a former National Security Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and has worked for the U.S. Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration. 

President Joe Biden’s warnings about potential state-sponsored cyberattacks from Russia in particular began with the Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine, which triggered a series of crippling economic sanctions among the U.S. and allied members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. 

More: Americans at high risk of Russian cyberattacks: What you should do right now

On Tuesday, the FBI and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency jointly called on all organizations to institute multifactor authentication protocols, timed lockouts and other security features to guard against malicious cyber activity.