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White House Rallies Support for New Cybersecurity Legislation

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As lawmakers are nearing a vote on cybersecurity legislation, Howard Schmidt, the White House’s cybersecurity coordinator, urged congress to consider the White House’s version of the bill, Federal News Radio reports.

The White House’s draft pushes for harder sentences for convicted cyber criminals in correlation with the Federal Information Security Management Act and imposes higher regulation requirements for critical infrastructure.

The draft bill was proposed last year and would give the federal government authority to place cybersecurity standards for privately owned critical infrastructure.

Lawmakers who oppose further imposition of regulatory requirements on the private industry are working to increase information sharing between private and public institutions as a countermeasure, according to Federal News Radio.

Thus far, the White House’s bill has gained the support of Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine).

Additional cybersecurity legislation includes the Secure IT Act and the Cybersecurity Act of 2012.

The White House’s bill would put the Department of Homeland Security in charge of regulating cybersecurity over companies that run computer systems critical to national security, where the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 would consolidate DHS cybersecurity programs into a unified office called the the National Center for Cybersecurity and Communications.

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