House Passes Bill On Homeland Security Cybersecurity Disclosures

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By Daniel R. Stoller and George Lynch

The House Jan. 9 passed a bill by voice vote that would require the Department of Homeland Security to report to Congress on how it discloses cybersecurity vulnerabilities to the private sector and other agencies.

The department works with businesses to coordinate information-sharing and other efforts to reduce such vulnerabilities, but its process for deciding what to share isn’t public.

The Cyber Vulnerability Disclosure Reporting Act (H.R. 3202) would be a first step toward giving lawmakers more insight into the department’s process at a time when large-scale data breaches and security vulnerability disclosures are on the rise.

“H.R. 3202 will give this body important information on our government wide efforts to secure civilian agency networks and the collaborative ongoing work to provide information to private sector partners on computing vulnerabilities,” Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Tex.), sponsor of the bill, said on the House floor.

The department would be required to report to Congress on its cybersecurity vulnerability disclosures over the last year within 240 days of the bill becoming law. It would also have to report on how the private sector, federal agencies, and other organizations used the information to mitigate threats.

The House Homeland Security Committee approved the bill July 26. There isn’t a companion bill in the Senate.

To contact the reporter on this story: Daniel R. Stoller in Washington at dstoller@bloomberglaw.com; George Lynch in Washington at glynch@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Donald Aplin at daplin@bloomberglaw.com

For More Information

The full bill can be found at http://src.bna.com/vtO

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