A bipartisan pair of senators has introduced a bill that would require the federal government to do more to help state and local officials combat cyber threats. Sens. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) on Thursday announced that they have reintroduced the State and Local Cyber Protection Act, which would bolster cybersecurity cooperation between the Department of Homeland Security and state and local governments. Cybersecurity has attracted increased attention in the wake of Russia’s cyberattacks aimed at influencing the presidential election and other high-profile breaches in the public and private sectors. Officials have particularly expressed concerns about the vulnerability of state systems and infrastructure to attacks.
Dozens of states asked federal officials for help securing their voting systems from cyberattacks ahead of the November elections, following reports that election databases in Arizona and Illinois had suffered breaches.
The legislation would require the Department of Homeland Security’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center to provide help and training, upon request, to state, local and tribal governments on thwarting and responding to cyber threats.