Bipartisan bill would let DHS team with consortiums on cybersecurity

Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) and Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) reintroduced legislation Thursday to allow the Department of Homeland Security to work with non-profit consortiums to aid local cybersecurity efforts. 

The National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium Act would allow the DHS to use consortia to help train local law enforcement and other government, develop information sharing programs and plan local cybersecurity strategies. 

The legislation comes as cybersecurity issues are receiving new attention following amid high-profile data breaches and accusations that Russian-backed hackers attempted to sway the election for President Trump.

{mossecondads}“With new access to specialists and cutting edge guidance, communities can improve their security and better plan for potential cyber attacks,” said Castro in a press release.  

A similar measure passed the House last session, but died in the Senate.

Every member of the San Antonio Congressional delegation — Democrats Henry Cuellar and Lloyd Doggett, and Republicans Will Hurd and Lamar Smith — will cosponsor on the House side. 

“State and local governments often don’t have access to the same tools as entities at the federal level. This bill would allow two leading academic institutions in Texas to help train states and local governments to respond and mitigate a potential cyberattack,” said Cornyn in a press release.

Both the University of Texas at San Antonio and Texas A&M’s extension program participate in the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium academic partnership.

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