As promised, Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), chairman of the House
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and ranking member C.A. Dutch
Ruppersberger (D-Md.), reintroduced their cybersecurity information sharing
bill, which passed in the House last session.
H.R. 624, the Cyber Intelligence and Sharing Protection Act,
is identical to their Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (H.R. 3523)
which passed the House 248-168 last April before running into a Senate
controlled by Democrats favoring a bill with cybersecurity guidelines
Republicans feared would morph into mandates.
H.R. 624 paves the way for more info sharing of classified
government info, sharing of threat info among ISPs and other industry players
or with the government on a voluntary basis, and provides liability protection
for that sharing.
The bill, then and now, has widespread industry support.
"By removing the current legal barriers to information sharing and
establishing the appropriate safeguards for the use of such information,"
said National Cable and Telecommunications Association President Michael Powell
in a letter to Rogers and Ruppersberger. "The nation's critical
infrastructure owners and operators and others within the Internet ecosystem
can better protect our national security and economy."
"Recent attacks on The New York Times, The Wall Street
Journal and the Federal Reserve highlight the pressing need to enhance
America's ability to address cyber-threats," said CTIA: The Wireless
Association CEO Steve Largent. "Our members are committed to helping, but
they need the government to be a willing partner to share intelligence and develop
solutions to protect our consumers and our networks."
"CTIA welcomes the introduction of the Rogers-Ruppersberger
bill because Congress can help facilitate this collaboration by enacting a
sensible framework to enable information sharing and provide appropriate
liability protections. This bipartisan bill does that and CTIA urges the
Congress to act quickly to make it law."
"Cybersecurity is a critically important issue for American
consumers, businesses and the overall U.S. economy," said AT&T
executive VP Tim McKone in a statement. "AT&T supports the Cyber
Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, bipartisan legislation which provides
legal certainty for the sharing of information on cyber threats as a part of an
effective cyber-defense strategy."
Verizon echoed those sentiments. "Verizon supports
legislation that boosts ongoing cybersecurity efforts and promotes the sharing
of cyberthreat information among communications companies and federal agencies,
provides appropriate liability protections and consumer privacy safeguards, and
achieves greater cybersecurity without technology mandates or prescriptive
rules," said senior VP Peter Davidson. "It's important that communications
infrastructure providers retain the flexibility to implement all measures available
to them to secure their networks and protect their customers.