Bipartisan bill asks Pentagon to track cyber skills in National Guard, Reserve

Bipartisan bill asks Pentagon to track cyber skills in National Guard, Reserve
© Victoria Sarno Jordan

A bipartisan team of senators introduced new legislation Monday requiring the Department of Defense (DOD) to track cybersecurity skills in the National Guard and Reserve. 

The DOD Emergency Response Capabilities Database Enhancement Act of 2017 would add a cybersecurity category to an already existing database that tracks the capabilities of National Guard and Reserve forces.

The bill was introduced by Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Deb FischerDeb FischerLawmakers share photos of their dogs in honor of National Puppy Day Senators demand Pentagon action after nude photo scandal GOP rep scolds Gillibrand for tearing into Marine general over nude-photo scandal MORE (R-Neb.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandSenators demand Pentagon action after nude photo scandal Chelsea Clinton to be honored by Variety, Lifetime Ten years later, House Dems reunite and look forward MORE (D-N.Y.) — all of whom serve on the Senate Armed Services Committee — as well as Sen. Chris CoonsChris CoonsSenators introduce new Iran sanctions Gorsuch sails on day one, but real test is Tuesday Live coverage: Supreme Court nominee hearings begin MORE (D-Del.).

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“The reality is that cyber warfare is an emerging and ever-evolving battlefield, and we must use all available tools to protect our nation’s security, including those that already exist in our National Guard units,” said Ernst, who chairs the Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee.

“Many of our guardsmen work in the cyber and IT field in their civilian careers, and we must present more opportunities to harness their skillset to advance our nation’s cyber initiatives,” she added in a statement.