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Task force to encourage cyber sector growth in Baltimore-D.C. corridor

Three Baltimore-area economic development groups have created a joint task force to encourage growth of the cyber industry in Maryland.

The Greater Baltimore Committee, the Greater Washington Board of Trade and the Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore announced the partnership Thursday, saying in a joint statement that the groups want to make the Baltimore-Washington corridor “the global center for cyber industry development.”

Robert Hannon — previously president and CEO of Anne Arundel County Economic Development Corp. — was hired as the task force’s project manager. Hannon’s job will be to draw on educational, government and business resources to develop a strategy for cyber industry growth.

“The purpose of this task force is to establish the Greater Washington-Baltimore region as the premier location for cyber capabilities, talent and innovation that ultimately leads to a positive economic impact and job creation for the region,” said J. Scott Wilfong, president and CEO of SunTrust Maryland and chairman of the Greater Washington Board of Trade.

Brian C. Rogers, chairman and CIO of T. Rowe Price Group Inc. and chairman of the Greater Baltimore Committee, said in a statement that the private sector needed to build on government cybersecurity work already being done in the region.

The Maryland General Assembly this year took a step to encourage that when it approved a $3 million cybersecurity investment tax credit requested by Gov. Martin O’Malley. The refundable credit, counted against investors’ income taxes, is equal to one-third of the amount invested in a qualified Maryland cybersecurity company, so long as that credit does not exceed $250,000.