House cyber bills to get votes Wednesday, Thursday

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The House’s two cybersecurity bills will get floor votes on Wednesday and Thursday next week.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) laid out his floor plan late Friday.

The House has been working this year on two complementary measures to enhance the public-private exchange of cyber threat data.

Both offerings — one each from the House Homeland Security panel and House Intelligence Committee — would give companies legal liability protections when sharing cyber threat data with the government.

The Intelligence bill will go Wednesday; Homeland Security’s bill will get its vote Thursday.

Proponents of the efforts — including a bipartisan group of lawmakers, many government officials and most industry groups — believe more data sharing is necessary to understand hackers’ tactics and defend critical networks.

Companies say they’ve been hesitant to share useful cyber info with the government, fearing shareholder lawsuits or government regulatory action.

Privacy advocates maintain both bills would shuttle more sensitive data to the National Security Agency (NSA), further empowering the intelligence community’s surveillance efforts.

Still, both bills appear to have a good shot at passing.


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