WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The FBI's former top cybersecurity official, Shawn Henry, said on Wednesday that he is taking a top job with Crowdstrike, a new security firm founded in February by two former executives with security software maker McAfee.
Henry, who retired from the FBI in March, said he looked forward to continuing his fight against cyber attacks from outside government, where such work often ran into bureaucratic, jurisdictional and legal constraints.
"I have always said the private sector needs to be a bigger part of the solution, and with CrowdStrike I'll have more flexibility and opportunity to make a difference from this side of the fence," Henry wrote in a blog posted on the company's website.
George Kurtz, the former worldwide chief technology offer of McAfee, and Dmitri Alperovitch, that company's former vice president of threat research, founded Crowdstrike in February with initial capital from private equity firm Warburg Pincus.
Alperovitch said Crowdstrike was helping Fortune 500 companies and government agencies track down and identify adversaries that had infiltrated their computer networks.
He lauded Henry's work with the FBI, where he helped set up organizations that brought together all of the members of intelligence and law enforcement community to pursue coordinated action against national security threats in cyberspace.
Henry will be the president of a newly formed subsidiary, CrowdStrike Services, that will help assess, attribute and respond to targeted intrusions from Chinese adversaries and others who are suspected of trying to steal intellectual property and trade secrets from major Western companies daily.
"CrowdStrike provides me the opportunity to continue this fight, from 'the other side', using intelligence and technology to get in front of the problem rather than merely reacting to it," Henry wrote in the blog. He said he liked the company's "idea of protecting the innocent through relentless identification and pursuit of the enemy,"
Henry, who spent 24 years at the FBI, served as executive assistant director of the FBI's Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch since September 2010. Before that, he was the assistant director in charge of the FBI's Washington field office.
(Reporting By Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Kim Coghill)