House passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams

House passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams
© Greg Nash

The House passed legislation by voice vote on Monday that would create “cyber incident response teams” at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which can be used to assist both government and private sector organizations after a data breach or other cyberattack.

The DHS Cyber Incident Response Teams Act would establish these teams within DHS’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, with the groups charged with providing assistance and support to “asset owners and operators” following a cyber incident. Private sector cyber experts would be allowed to be members of the teams.

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The bill’s primary sponsor, House Foreign Affairs Committee ranking member Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulTexas Republican: Migrant conditions in his state the 'worst' he's seen Hillicon Valley: Facebook unveils new cryptocurrency | Waters wants company to halt plans | Democrats look to force votes on election security | Advertisers partner with tech giants on 'digital safety' | House GOP unveils cyber agenda House Homeland Security Republicans to introduce slew of cybersecurity bills MORE (R-Texas), said in a statement following the bill’s passage that the legislation will help foster “collaboration between the public and private sector,” describing the cyber teams as “first responders” after an attack.

“When cyber-attacks occur, immediate expertise is needed to mitigate damage and ensure organizations are restored,” McCaul said. “Today’s legislation ensures that the Department of Homeland Security can foster collaboration between the public and private sector to ensure our nation can continue to adapt to the constant changes in the cyber landscape.”

Other sponsors of the bill are Reps. Jim LangevinJames (Jim) R. LangevinOvernight Defense: Trump says he doesn't need exit strategy with Iran | McConnell open to vote on Iran war authorization | Senate panel advances bill to restrict emergency arms sales House passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams Hillicon Valley: Assange hit with 17 more charges | Facebook removes record 2.2B fake profiles | Senate passes anti-robocall bill | Senators offer bill to help companies remove Huawei equipment MORE (D-R.I.), John KatkoJohn Michael KatkoOvernight Defense: House passes T spending package with defense funds | Senate set to vote on blocking Saudi arms sales | UN nominee defends climate change record Senate panel advances bill to protect government devices against cyber threats House passes amendment to block funding for transgender troops ban MORE (R-N.Y.), Dutch RuppersbergerCharles (Dutch) Albert RuppersbergerHouse passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams House Appropriations passes defense bill that would limit funds for border wall, pull US support from Yemen war GOP-controlled Senate breaks with Trump on Saudi vote MORE (D-Md.), and John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeHillicon Valley: Tim Cook visits White House | House hearing grapples with deepfake threat | Bill, Melinda Gates launch lobbying group | Tech turns to K-Street in antitrust fight | Lawsuit poses major threat to T-Mobile, Sprint merger House Intel to take first major deep dive into threat of 'deepfakes' House passes bill to establish DHS cyber 'first responder' teams MORE (R-Texas).

The bill has a companion measure in the Senate sponsored by Sen. Maggie HassanMargaret (Maggie) HassanSecond ex-Senate staffer charged in aiding doxxing of GOP senators Key endorsements: A who's who in early states Overnight Health Care: Poll finds most Americans misunderstand scope of 'Medicare for All' | Planned Parenthood chief readies for 2020 | Drugmakers' lawsuit ramps up fight with Trump MORE (D-N.H.) along with Sens. Gary PetersGary Charles PetersDemocrats leery of Sanders plan to cancel student loan debt Senate panel advances bill to protect government devices against cyber threats Democrats make U-turn on calling border a 'manufactured crisis' MORE (D-Mich.) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanHillicon Valley: Investigation finds federal agencies failed to address cyber vulnerabilities | Officials crack down on illegal robocallers | Warren offers plan to secure elections | Senators grill Google exec on 'persuasive technology' Senate investigation finds multiple federal agencies left sensitive data vulnerable to cyberattacks for past decade Senate panel advances bill to protect government devices against cyber threats MORE (R-Ohio). The Senate version was approved by the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in April and awaits a floor vote.