Senators Want OT, ICS in President’s Cup Cyber Competition – MeriTalk | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

Sens. Gary Peters, D-Mich., chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and Mike Braun, R-Ind., introduced bipartisan legislation this week to broaden the scope of the President’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition.

The President’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition is a national competition to reward top cybersecurity professionals in the Federal government. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) currently is looking for contestants for the 2024 competition.

The new Senate bill, titled the Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity Competition Act, aims to expand the competition by including operational technology (OT) and industrial control systems (ICS).

“As foreign adversaries continue to test our cybersecurity defenses, it is more important than ever to have a well-equipped workforce that is prepared to repel all cybersecurity threats,” Sen. Peters said in a press release.?“My bipartisan bill will keep the President’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition on the cutting edge as they seek to train our cybersecurity workforce.”

“The United States prides itself in being a champion in cyber security innovation, with many technical advancements coming out of Indiana. I’m proudly cosponsoring this bill that will enhance our national cybersecurity training competition and ultimately protect American technology from cyberattacks from around the world,” added Sen. Braun.

The senators said that OT and ICS are often overlooked by the cybersecurity community, even though they support critical infrastructure networks. The bill – whose text is not yet available – would make certain the competition tests for skills relevant to OT and ICS to ensure Federal cyber professionals can effectively work with critical infrastructure sectors.

According to the senators, OT and ICS serve as the backbone of most major industries and help perform critical tasks such as distributing power across the nation, pumping water from reservoirs, and assembling vehicles in factories.

Additionally, the lawmakers said the recent Iranian-backed cyberattacks targeting American water utility companies’ internet-connected ICS devices only emphasize the need for additional training in these critical areas.

This year marks the fifth year of the President’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition. The competition was developed in response to former President Trump’s “Executive Order on America’s Cybersecurity Workforce.”


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