The House on Thursday passed a bill by Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, to bolster cybersecurity at the state and local level.

Representatives passed HR 3869, the State and Local Cyber Protection Act of 2015, unanimously.
“The need to address cybersecurity at the state and local level is of the utmost importance. From our local DMV offices and courthouses to our critical infrastructure, the exploitable vulnerabilities and possible consequences are alarming,” Hurd said on the House floor.

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.

•    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.

“State and local information systems host a wide range of sensitive personally identifiable information and critical infrastructure data, making them especially attractive for cyberattacks,” Hurd said. “Local governments often do not have access to the technical capabilities and training required to address highly exploitable cybersecurity vulnerabilities.”

The bill now moves to the Senate.

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MeriTalk Staff