House passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams

The House passed legislation by voice vote on Monday that would create “cyber incident response teams” at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which can be used to assist both government and private sector organizations after a data breach or other cyberattack.

The DHS Cyber Incident Response Teams Act would establish these teams within DHS’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, with the groups charged with providing assistance and support to “asset owners and operators” following a cyber incident. Private sector cyber experts would be allowed to be members of the teams.

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The bill’s primary sponsor, House Foreign Affairs Committee ranking member Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulHillicon Valley: YouTube to ban extremist videos | Company in firestorm over conservative commentator | Big tech braces for antitrust showdown | Study finds Russian trolls more effective than thought | Democrats want answers on medical data breach Hillicon Valley: YouTube to ban extremist videos | Company in firestorm over conservative commentator | Big tech braces for antitrust showdown | Study finds Russian trolls more effective than thought | Democrats want answers on medical data breach House Democrat places hold on State Department’s move to establish cyber bureau MORE (R-Texas), said in a statement following the bill’s passage that the legislation will help foster “collaboration between the public and private sector,” describing the cyber teams as “first responders” after an attack.

“When cyber-attacks occur, immediate expertise is needed to mitigate damage and ensure organizations are restored,” McCaul said. “Today’s legislation ensures that the Department of Homeland Security can foster collaboration between the public and private sector to ensure our nation can continue to adapt to the constant changes in the cyber landscape.”

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Other sponsors of the bill are Reps. Jim LangevinJames (Jim) R. LangevinHillicon Valley: Assange hit with 17 more charges | Facebook removes record 2.2B fake profiles | Senate passes anti-robocall bill | Senators offer bill to help companies remove Huawei equipment Hillicon Valley: Lawmakers seek ‘time out’ on facial recognition tech | DHS asks cybersecurity staff to volunteer for border help | Judge rules Qualcomm broke antitrust law | Bill calls for 5G national security strategy DHS suggests new role for cybersecurity staff — helping with border crisis MORE (D-R.I.), John KatkoJohn Michael KatkoHillicon Valley: Pelosi blasts Facebook for not taking down doctored video | Democrats push election security after Mueller warning | Critics dismiss FCC report on broadband access | Uber to ban passengers with low ratings Lawmakers raise security concerns about China building NYC subway cars After National Police Week, clearer heads must prevail in legislation slashing Amtrak security MORE (R-N.Y.), Dutch RuppersbergerCharles (Dutch) Albert RuppersbergerHouse Appropriations passes defense bill that would limit funds for border wall, pull US support from Yemen war GOP-controlled Senate breaks with Trump on Saudi vote Overnight Defense: Trump says he may cancel G-20 meeting with Putin | Three service members killed in Afghanistan | Active-shooter drill sparks panic at Walter Reed MORE (D-Md.), and John RatcliffeJohn Lee Ratcliffe58 GOP lawmakers vote against disaster aid bill GOP takes aim at Comey, Brennan Mueller mystery: Will he ever testify to Congress? MORE (R-Texas).

The bill has a companion measure in the Senate sponsored by Sen. Maggie HassanMargaret (Maggie) HassanBipartisan senators reveal sweeping health care package ‘American Taliban’ released from prison ‘American Taliban’ set to be released after years behind bars MORE (D-N.H.) along with Sens. Gary PetersGary Charles PetersThe Hill’s Morning Report — Trump pushes Mexico for ‘significantly more’ as tariffs loom The Hill’s Morning Report — Trump pushes Mexico for ‘significantly more’ as tariffs loom John James announces 2020 Senate run in Michigan MORE (D-Mich.) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanDemocrats needle GOP on standing up to Trump Democrats needle GOP on standing up to Trump Trump, GOP edge closer to confrontation on tariffs MORE (R-Ohio). The Senate version was approved by the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in April and awaits a floor vote.  

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