Wednesday, June 23, 2010

HR 5548 Introduced

Last week HR 5548, the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010, was introduced in the House. If that title sounds familiar it is because this is a companion bill to S 3480 that I discussed earlier. The House version of this bill was introduced by Rep. Harmon (D, CA) and King (R, NY), continuing the bipartisan tradition for this legislation started in the Senate. An article at briefly discusses the provisions of this bill. The introduction of this companion bill will slightly increase the chances of this cyber security legislation becoming law. It will allow for simultaneous committee action in both houses of Congress. That is important with a bill like this, since there are multiple committees in both houses that have jurisdiction over different provisions in the bill. The House Homeland Security Committee is going to have to take some quick action on this bill if it is to get to a floor vote this year. We have a lengthy 4th of July ‘weekend’ coming up and then the summer recesses in August. Little will get done when Congress returns in September because of the pre-election posturing that is inevitable in any even numbered year. This year we can expect it to be worse than normal. As I noted in my posting on S 3480, this bill, if passed, could have a significant effect on come high-risk chemical facilities. It doesn’t address industrial control systems security, but it may affect standard IT systems at selected ‘critical facilities’. That being the case, I’ll continue to track both of these pieces of legislation, reporting on significant events and changes in both bills.

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