Senator Charles Schumer visited the North Country Monday, calling for increased funding for our nation’s cyber security. Matt Hunter has more on what the senator had to say.

QUEENSBURY, N.Y. – While speaking from SUNY Adirondack’s campus in Queensbury Monady, Senator Charles Schumer said local students could play a crucial role in protecting our nation’s cyber assets. During his remarks, the Senate minority leader said hundreds of millions of dollars need to be invested in both the country’s cyber security infrastructure, and also training and education.

The Senator says cyber threats are coming from all corners of the globe, threatening both national security and the private information of hundreds of millions of Americans.

SUNY Adirondack launched a new Cyber Security AAS degree this past fall and has 24 students enrolled, with that number expected to grow next year. Without people trained to work in the increasingly important field, Schumer says the nation’s networks will remain vulnerable, pointing to Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election as a prime example.

“Look, one of the places that is going to need the people that come out of this program are the election boards across the country,” Schumer said. “They are going to need to know how to protect themselves when it comes to cyber security.”

When SUNY Adirondack launched the cyber security program last fall, the school had twice as many students sign up as expected, so extra sections of the courses had to be added. There are three courses being offered this year, and that number will double next fall.