March 12, 2020

Bipartisan Hassan-Led Bills to Bolster Cybersecurity at All Levels of Government Pass Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee

Committee Also Passes Hassan-Backed Priorities to Combat Fentanyl and Opioids at the Border, Reduce Government Waste

WASHINGTON – The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee yesterday approved bipartisan legislation introduced by Senator Maggie Hassan to establish a Cybersecurity State Coordinator position in every state. Each state’s coordinator would help their state to prevent and respond to cybersecurity threats by working with federal, state, and local governments as well as schools, hospitals, and other entities.

 

“New Hampshire and communities across the country have seen firsthand the impact that ransomware attacks can have on local governments, schools, nursing homes, and other entities,” Senator Hassan said. “I’m pleased we voted to advance my bipartisan bill to establish a Cybersecurity Coordinator in every state, which would help to bring more support to state and local entities in order to prevent and respond to cyberattacks. I will continue working to bring this commonsense, bipartisan bill up for a vote on the Senate floor.”  

 

The Committee also passed bipartisan legislation introduced by Senators Hassan and Ron Johnson (R-WI) to ensure that the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has the tools and information that it needs to protect critical infrastructure. Their bill, which allows the agency to issue subpoenas to compel Internet Service Providers to offer information when vulnerabilities are detected in critical infrastructure, is narrowly-tailored to protect the privacy rights of all entities, giving the agency only the information it needs to combat a cyberattack.

 

The Committee also voted to advance a number of Hassan-backed bills, including:

·         The bipartisan DHS Opioid Detection Resilience Act, which would require Customs and Border Protection to provide personnel with adequate fentanyl and opioid detection equipment.

·         The bipartisan Synthetic Opioid Exposure Prevention and Training Act, to ensure that Customs and Border Protection officers, agents, and other personnel receive training and personal protective equipment to protect them against the ill effects of potential synthetic opioid exposure, like fentanyl, including protective equipment for canines and training in administering Narcan.

·         The bipartisan Securing America’s Ports Act, which would instruct the Department of Homeland Security to prepare a plan to increase the scan rate of incoming passenger and commercial vehicles to 100 percent at each land port of entry.

·         The bipartisan DHS Office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Authorization Act, which Senator Hassan cosponsored to strengthen the Department of Homeland Security Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

·         The bipartisan Safeguarding Tomorrow through Ongoing Risk Mitigation (STORM) Act to establish a revolving loan fund that local governments can use to invest in projects that reduce a community’s risk to natural disasters like flooding.

 

Senator Hassan has prioritized efforts to address state and local cybersecurity threats as a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and the bipartisan Senate Cybersecurity Caucus. Bipartisan legislation introduced by Senators Hassan and Portman to bolster cybersecurity in the public and private sector was signed into law as part of the final bipartisan budget agreement at the end of last year. Senators Hassan and Portman’s bipartisan Hack Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Act and Public-Private Cybersecurity Cooperation Act was included in a package of bills that were signed into law in 2018.  

 

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