Rogers: Cyberattack threat to US growing worse

“The second part of that is the attack part which is what we`re talking about that we`re so vulnerable for, is actually shutting down our financial services or finding other ways to destroy material in companies that won`t allow them to function on a day-to-day basis,” he added.

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Rogers said he would reintroduce the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA).

“There was a bill that passed, bipartisan, my ranking member Dutch Ruppersberger [D-Md.] and I wrote a bill, passed the House of Representatives, it did languish in the Democrat- controlled Senate,” said Rogers. “We`re going to try that again as a matter of fact as early as this week. And it`s very simple: share information, share cyberthreat information.”

CISPA aims to encourage private companies to share information about cyberthreats with the intelligence community. But the bill faced strong opposition from privacy and civil liberties groups and the White House last year.

Privacy groups warn that the bill would result in more private communications flowing to intelligence agencies.

The White House issued a veto threat against the bill last year, but has provided no word on whether they would oppose efforts to reintroduce the legislation.

Rogers said that “95 percent” of private-sector networks were vulnerable, “most of which are penetrated already.”

He said that by allowing companies to share their cyberthreat information with the government, “senior leadership in the intelligence said they think we can stop 90 percent of our problems.”

But Rogers stressed that Washington needed to act soon, citing a recent cyberattack by Iran on the Saudi oil company Aramco, which destroyed 30,000 machines and the loss of critical data.

“If you apply that to businesses around the country, think of the economic chaos that that would cause,” he said.