Cybersecurity legislation is still needed according to lawmakers
Cybersecurity today is a huge issue not only for businesses and individuals in the United States, but also for the federal government. Defense News reports that the White House is working with the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and others to draft an executive order to counter cybersecurity threats.
The cybersecurity effort from the White House and other governmental agencies comes after the U.S. Senate failed in an attempt to pass its own cybersecurity legislation. The legislation from the U.S. Senate would have set security standards for companies who operate critical systems for the United States infrastructure such as the electrical grid, water treatment facilities, and transportation systems.
An executive order on cybersecurity will not replace the need for cybersecurity legislation according to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. She says that the Executive Order will be less effective than legislation because it can’t do several important things. An Executive Order is unable to do things such as provide liability protections for certain companies who are victims of cyber attacks, increase criminal penalties for cyber criminals, and provide the DHS with funding to hire and pay competitive salaries to cybersecurity workers.
Napolitano said, “We still need cyber legislation.”
Some senators have little hope that cybersecurity legislation would be passed during the lame-duck session following the November elections.
Senator Joseph Lieberman said, “I would not count on it. The sooner the executive branch is ready to try to fill whatever gaps it can, the safer the country will be.”
Source: Defense News