Cybersecurity threats from hacktivists, criminals, and hostile nation states are enough to keep government officials, businesses, and consumers up at night. These attacks are growing in sophistication and frequency and pose serious threats to our national and economic security.
Everyone impacted by these vicious and dangerous acts must work together to help prevent, protect against, and effectively respond to them. That’s why the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is working with our members, the broader business community, and government to strengthen cybersecurity across the board.
For example, the Chamber was an early and strong proponent of the framework for improving critical infrastructure cybersecurity that was produced by the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in 2013. Over the past five years, the Chamber has strongly urged private entities – as well as domestic and foreign governments – to use the NIST framework to manage their own risks. We’ve also supported legislation that allows businesses to voluntarily share cyber threat data with industry peers and analysis centers and provides strong protections from liability when doing so.
We’re currently supporting two other bills that would improve the government’s ability to address cyber concerns in a coordinated and effective way. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Act would restructure the Department of Homeland Security’s cyber directorate to facilitate engagement with the business community before, during, and after cyber incidents. We expect the bill to be ready for the president’s signature this fall.
The Cyber Diplomacy Act would consolidate cyber and digital economy issues in one office within the State Department and confer the rank of ambassador to the office’s director, which would allow high-level diplomatic engagement with foreign partners around the world. It has passed the House and is awaiting action in the Senate.
One of the Chamber’s most important efforts is our Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign, now in its fifth year. We’ve held dozens of regional cybersecurity events around the country; provided digital resources to companies on how to assess risks and develop a cyber incident response plan; highlighted and shared best practices; and encouraged the use of the NIST cybersecurity framework. Last week, we unveiled an innovative new tool to help businesses quantify risk and monitor the results of efforts to improve their security posture.
The bottom line is that when businesses and government take steps to protect data, assets, and consumers, they are promoting a strong, secure, and resilient economy. That’s what the Chamber is all about.