Hurd Introduces Bill to Bolster State and Local Government Cybersecurity
Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Will Hurd (R-TX) today introduced the State and Local Cyber Protection Act of 2015, which will give state and local governments access to federal resources when it comes to securing their digital information systems.
“State and local governments often do not have access to adequate personnel or technical cybersecurity resources,” said Hurd, who organized cyber offensive campaigns while working as an undercover officer in the CIA. “This is more than just about protecting the private information of individuals who work for local government agencies. Frankly, cyber breaches at any level can put our national security at risk.”
Hurd’s bill directs the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC) at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to coordinate with state and local governments on securing their information systems on a voluntary basis. The NCCIC can assist in identifying system vulnerabilities and possible solutions. They can also provide technical, implementation and privacy training for cybersecurity analysts. In addition, the NCCIC will be required to seek feedback from state and local governments in order to report on the effectiveness of their efforts.
"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."
In a letter of support for the legislation, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) said, “Cybersecurity remains one of the biggest priorities for our nation’s CIOs and we are pleased that Rep. Hurd has introduced H.R. 3869, which we believe will assist CIOs in bolstering their state’s cybersecurity posture. The letter continued on by encouraging the House Homeland Security Committee to report the bill favorably out of committee.
“As I’ve said before, cybersecurity isn’t just a buzzword. It’s a serious issue that can potentially impact every single American. This is common-sense legislation that strengthens our nation’s cyber posture at every level of government," Hurd concluded.