Homeland Security Bureau Chief Supports New Cybersecurity Bill

By Ashok Bindra March 28, 2012

To give the government new regulatory powers to protect the United States against cyber attacks, a top Federal Communications Commission (FCC) official has endorsed the Cybersecurity Act, a bill authored by Senators Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine). According to a post on The Hill’s technology blog Hillicon Valley, James Barnett, chief of the FCC's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, said during a hearing of the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Communications and Technology that “he supports the regulatory provisions of the Cybersecurity Act.”

The blogger Brendan Sasso wrote, “Legislation would give the Homeland Security Department the power to require that critical systems such as electrical grids, meet minimum cyber security standards.” As per the blog, Barnett made the comment in response to questioning from Rep. John Dingell (D-Mich.). Another official to support the Act was Fiona Alexander, an associate administrator at the Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

In the post, Sasso added that Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) and other Republicans have criticized the Lieberman-Collins bill, saying it would create new bureaucracy and burden businesses. In fact, as per the blog, McCain and other Republicans have introduced their own cyber security bill, coined the “Secure It Act.” It focuses on promoting information sharing about cyber threats between the private sector and the government and recommends tough penalties for cyber crimes.

The Secure It Act was just introduced in the House on Tuesday by Representatives Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.). During Wednesday's hearing, “Bono Mack argued that the government should be a facilitator, not a regulator of cyber security,” wrote Sasso.

However, as per the blog post, supporters of the Lieberman-Collins bill are warning that without minimum standards for critical systems, the country is at risk of suffering a catastrophic cyber attack. “The White House has endorsed the Lieberman-Collins bill and has warned Congress to not resort to half-measures to beef up cyber security,” wrote Sasso.




Edited by Jamie Epstein

TechZone360 Contributor

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Mist Applies AI to Improve Wi-Fi

By: Paula Bernier    11/9/2017

Mist has created an AI-driven wireless platform that puts the user and his or mobile device at the heart of the wireless network. Combining machine le…

Read More

International Tech Innovation Growing, Says Consumer Technology Association

By: Doug Mohney    11/8/2017

The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) is best known for the world's largest trade event, but the organization's reach is growing far beyond the CE…

Read More

Broadcom Makes Unsolicited $130B Bid for Qualcomm

By: Paula Bernier    11/6/2017

In what could result in the biggest tech deal in history, semiconductor company Broadcom has made an offer to buy Qualcomm for a whopping $130 billion…

Read More

How Google's 'Moonshot' Could Benefit Industrial Markets

By: Kayla Matthews    10/30/2017

The term "moonshot" encapsulates the spirit of technological achievement: an accomplishment so ambitious, so improbable, that it's equivalent to sendi…

Read More

After Cisco/Broadsoft, Who's Next for M&A?

By: Doug Mohney    10/27/2017

Cisco's trail of acquisition tears over the decades includes the Flip video camera, Cerent, Scientific Atlantic, Linksys, and a couple of others. The …

Read More