Hurd Bill Offers Cyber Assistance to State and Local Governments
Washington, D.C.— Today, The State and Local Cyber Protection Act of 2015 passed the House of Representatives unanimously with bipartisan support, marking U.S. Representative Will Hurd’s third bill to pass the House during his first year as the representative for the 23rd Congressional District of Texas. Hurd, a former CIA officer and cybersecurity expert, offered the bill to help state and local governments protect their data and information systems in the wake of several high profile cyber-attacks earlier this year.
“State and local information systems host a wide range of sensitive personally identifiable information and critical infrastructure data, making them especially attractive for cyber-attacks. Local governments often do not have access to the technical capabilities and training required to address highly exploitable cybersecurity vulnerabilities,” said Hurd. “My bill will allow state and local governments, upon request, access to the assistance, training, and tools that are required to secure our nation’s information systems and protect our constituent’s information at every level of government.”
The bill directs the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC) at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to coordinate with State and Local governments, voluntarily and upon request, on securing their information systems. Additionally, H.R. 3869 authorizes DHS to provide technical training for state and local cybersecurity analysts, inform state and locals on current cybersecurity guidelines at the federal level, and administer technical training for state and local cybersecurity analysts. DHS will be required to seek feedback from state and local governments following the bill’s enactment and report this information back to the House of Representatives and Senate.
"San Antonio is quickly emerging as a nationally-recognized hub for cybersecurity innovation and growth. From the Department of Defense missions and security companies that call our city home, to everyday online commerce, the use of the internet has become a necessary tool for millions of Americans," said San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor. "I am very supportive of Congressman Hurd's State and Local Cyber Protection Act of 2015, which helps us better secure our information systems with a more coordinated effort between local and state governments."
The measure now moves to the Senate where it awaits further action.