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Immediate Release

Establishment of the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy

As directed in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023, the Department of Defense established the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy (ASD(CP)) and the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy (OASD(CP)) on March 20, 2024.

The ASD(CP) will be the senior official responsible for overall supervision of DoD policy for cyber operations.  The ASD(CP) will be under the authority, direction, and control of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy (USD(P)).  In addition, ASD(CP) serves concurrently as the Principal Cyber Advisor (PCA) and, in that role, acts as principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense on military cyber forces and activities.  The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy (DASD(CP)) and Deputy Principal Cyber Advisor (DPCA) report through the ASD(CP).

"In standing up this office, the Department is giving cyber the focus and attention that Congress intended," said Acting Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Sasha Baker.

The Secretary of Defense has designated Ms. Ashley Manning, a career member of the Senior Executive Service, as the official performing the duties of the ASD(CP) until such time as an individual is nominated by the President, confirmed by the Senate, and appointed to the position. The President has nominated Michael Sulmeyer, who is currently serving as the Principal Cyber Advisor to the Secretary of the Army, to be the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy. 

The ASD(CP) is responsible to the Secretary of Defense, Deputy Secretary of Defense, and USD(P) for all matters related to cyber-related activities that support or enable DoD missions in, through, and from cyberspace, including but not limited to:

  • Developing, coordinating, assessing, and overseeing the implementation of DoD cyberspace policy and strategy, and ensuring these efforts are aligned with overarching national security objectives.
  • Overseeing and certifying the department's Cyberspace Operations Budget. Additionally, providing fiscal and budgetary oversight to USCYBERCOMs $3B annual execution with their 'Enhanced Budget Control' (Budget Authority, as recently approved by the FY24 DoD Appropriations Act).
  • Monitoring programs and activities associated with implementation of cyberspace workforce development, recruitment, and retention. 
  • Overseeing integration of cyberspace operations and capabilities into operations and contingency plans.
  • Developing DoD cyberspace policy guidance on private sector outreach, engagement, and agreements.
  • Leading the DoD implementation of national-level cyberspace policies.
  • Leading the development, implementation, and oversight of cyberspace-related activities for security cooperation.
  • Exercising authority, direction, and control over the official designated as Deputy PCA with respect to that official's Deputy PCA duties.