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June 7, 2022

NYS ITS Announces Chris DeSain Will Serve as NYS Chief Information Security Officer

NYS ITS Announces Chris DeSain Will Serve as NYS Chief Information Security Officer
Chris DeSain Appointed CISO Effective Immediately


Tuesday, June 7, 2022

The New York State Office of Information Technology Services (ITS) today announced Chris DeSain will serve as New York's Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), a position responsible for monitoring and maintaining the security of the state's information systems and data from cyber intrusion and attack.

"With his wealth of experience and passion for cyber, Chris DeSain will be an extraordinary addition to our team, and will continue to ensure that cybersecurity is a priority all throughout New York," NYS ITS Chief Information Officer Angelo 'Tony' Riddick said. "It is more important than ever that our state is prepared for and can quickly respond to today's ever-growing and ever-evolving cyber challenges, and Chris Desain can do just that."

Chris DeSain will serve as CISO effective immediately. Most recently, Mr. DeSain served as the Director for the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) Office of Counter Terrorism Cyber Incident Response team prior to his post as Director of Cyber Command at ITS. He brings 24 years of experience in cybersecurity including nearly 20 years in leadership positions in NYS government. Mr. DeSain also helped build the New York State Police (NYSP) Cyber Program, helped craft the FBI Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) regulations, and became the first civilian CJIS Information Security Officer in the nation. 

During his tenure in ITS Cyber Command, Mr. DeSain formed the "Red Team" and established proactive Threat Response to help ensure timely action and remediation of potential threats and vulnerabilities.

Mr. DeSain has earned his GIAC Security Essentials Certification (GSEC) - a professional certification for those seeking to demonstrate technical proficiency in the field of cybersecurity. He was awarded the Best of New York from the Center for Digital Government in 2013 and the Cyber Security Champion Award from NYS in 2017.

After an extensive search, Mr. DeSain replaces Karen Sorady, who retired in December 2021 after a career in information security spanning more than three decades.

About ITS

The New York State Office of Information Technology Services (ITS) was created in 2012 to transform IT services in an effort to make New York State government work smarter for its citizens and enable the state to be accessible for businesses through the use of technology. ITS provides statewide IT strategic direction, directs IT policy and delivers centralized IT products and services that support the mission of the State. ITS operates data centers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to support statewide mission-critical applications for over 50 Agencies, over 17 million citizen accounts, 120,000 employee accounts, 60,000 phones, 99,000 desktops and laptops, and 3,433 Virtual Desktop remote connections. ITS operates a secure network of over 1,600 miles of fiber to deliver telecommunications, Internet and Intranet services, enterprise email systems and support, IT training, networking, data storage and processing to State government entities in addition to developing new services in support of citizens, businesses and State Agencies.

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