Three bipartisan cybersecurity bills advance out of Senate Homeland Security Committee | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

Three cybersecurity-focused bills authored by U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) advanced to the full Senate from the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee this week, proposing new possibilities for outreach, rural hospitals and partnerships abroad.

The DHS International Cyber Partner Act would authorized both the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to assign personnel across the world, providing cybersecurity and other assistance and expertise to foreign governments and international organizations. Further, international partners could be looped into existing cybersecurity programs to aid critical infrastructure systems for the United States.

“Foreign adversaries and cybercriminals continue to target essential networks here at home and around the world. It’s clear the our government must lead the world in identifying threats and working to address network vulnerabilities so we can prevent disruptive attacks,” Peters said. “These bipartisan bills will help ensure American communities, as well as our international partners and allies have access to cybersecurity support they need to fight back against these threats.”

A second bill, the Cybersecurity Awareness Act, would if passed direct CISA to create a year-round campaign of education to tell the public about best practices for cyber-attack prevention and mitigation of cybersecurity risks. CISA would need to work with private sector organizations, state, local, Tribal and territorial governments, nonprofits and universities on this effort, and make plans for effectively communicating awareness. Working with other federal agencies and departments, CISA would need to guarantee effective and timely communication, and make campaign resources publicly available and regularly updated.

Finally, the Rural Hospital Cybersecurity Enhancement Act would require CISA to create comprehensive rural hospital cybersecurity workforce development strategy taking into account public-private partnerships, training and curricula development, as well as policy recommendations, and to provide cybersecurity training resources to hospital systems. Rural hospitals can be some of the most vulnerable, as they often lack the resources and staff to secure systems from cyberattacks, yet leave patients with compromised medical information and disrupted care if breached.


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