New Mexico governor’s executive order boosts state cyber protections

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham issued an executive order intended to safeguard sensitive state agency information and networks.
Michelle Lujan Grisham
Michelle Lujan Grisham speaks outside the U.S. Capitol on June 13, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Toya Sarno Jordan / Getty Images)

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham issued an executive order on Friday that implements more stringent measures to safeguard sensitive state agency information and better protect the state from cybersecurity threats. 

The order directs the state’s Department of Information Technology to conduct thorough IT and security assessments on state agencies in order to detect security vulnerabilities. Agencies are also now required to implement cybersecurity, information security and privacy policies that are considered at least moderate-impact by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Agencies must certify compliance with the standards by Nov. 1.

“Cybersecurity is not just a technological issue; it’s a matter of public safety and national security,” Lujan Grisham said in a press release. “That’s why I’ve taken decisive action to fortify the resilience of our state agencies against potential cyber intrusions.”

The order follows several cybersecurity incidents in Kentucky, including a cyberattack last fall against the state’s Office of the Superintendent of Insurance. A bill introduced in January aimed at boosting the state’s cybersecurity by establishing minimum standards for state agencies made it to the governor’s desk following several revisions, but was ultimately pocket-vetoed.


Peter Mantos, a special IT projects adviser to the governor, told StateScoop in 2022, when he was the state’s chief information officer, that cybersecurity is a growing priority for the state as it expands the reach of its broadband infrastructure.

Mantos also said his office was conducting security audits of each state agency to give them suggestions of how to shore up their defenses and that as more residents go online, it becomes more important for the state to provide cybersecurity resources and to protect local governments.

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