U.S. Representative and former MACo President C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger introduced legislation with a bipartisan sponsor line that will help local governments address cybersecurity vulnerabilities.
This legislation would authorize a new grant program at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to address potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities on local government networks.
“Hackers are increasingly targeting state and local governments, as we painfully learned in Baltimore last year, where a ransomware attack cost the city more than $10 million,” said Congressman Ruppersberger. “Even worse, some communities are actually paying the ransom – it’s a risk calculation that many at the state and local level do not have the expertise to make. This legislation will give state and local governments the resources they need to invest in cybersecurity and protect themselves and their citizens.”
The State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act:
- Establishes a $400 million DHS grant program that incentivizes States to increase their own cybersecurity funding.
- Requires DHS’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) develop a strategy to improve the cybersecurity of State, local, tribal, and territorial governments.
- Requires State, local, tribal, and territorial governments develop comprehensive Cybersecurity Plans to guide use of grant dollars.
- Establishes a State and Local Cybersecurity Resiliency Committee so State, local, tribal, and territorial governments can advise CISA on their cybersecurity needs.
The State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act will be marked up in the Committee on Homeland Security on February 13.