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 FischerDebra (Deb) Strobel FischerBill to bolster gun background checks gains enough support to break filibuster Senate Republicans call on Trump to preserve NAFTA US trade deficit rises on record imports from China MORE (R-Neb.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandGillibrand endorses Cuomo for reelection Coalition presses Transportation Dept. for stricter oversight of driverless cars Do Dems need someone people like to beat Trump? MORE (D-N.Y.) — all of whom serve on the Senate Armed Services Committee — as well as Sen. Chris CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsOvernight Defense: Senate sides with Trump on military role in Yemen | Dem vets push for new war authorization on Iraq anniversary | General says time isn't 'right' for space corps Water has experienced a decade of bipartisan success Protecting American innovation MORE (D-Del.).

“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.