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Public Statements

Cybersecurity Enhancement Act of 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. SMITH of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

I thank Representative McCaul and Representative Lipinski for introducing this commonsense, bipartisan legislation. I am pleased to be an original cosponsor of H.R. 756, the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act of 2013.

As our reliance on information technology expands, so do our vulnerabilities. Cyber attacks against U.S. Government and private sector networks are on the rise. Protecting America's cyber systems is critical to our economic and national security. Keeping our cyber infrastructure secure is a responsibility shared by different Federal agencies, including the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The Cybersecurity Enhancement Act coordinates research and development activities to better address evolving cyber threats. The legislation promotes much-needed research and development to help create new technologies and standards that better protect America's information technology systems. To improve America's cybersecurity abilities, this bill strengthens activities in four areas:

One, strategic planning for cybersecurity research and development needs across the Federal Government;

Two, basic research at the National Science Foundation, which we know is important to increasing security over the long term;

Three, National Science Foundation scholarships to improve the quality of the cybersecurity workforce;

Four, improved research, development, and public outreach organized by NIST related to cybersecurity.

These are modest but important changes that will help us better protect our cyber networks.

Cyber attacks threaten our national and economic security. To solve this problem, America needs a solution that involves the cooperation of many public and private sector entities. We must develop a rigorous scientific foundation for cybersecurity. This legislation helps foster such an effort, which will make our computer systems more secure.

The bill was recently approved by the Science, Space, and Technology Committee with strong bipartisan support. I again thank my Science Committee colleagues, Representatives McCaul and Lipinski, for their initiative on this issue, and look forward to this bill becoming law.

Mr. Speaker, the following groups have written letters of support for H.R. 756, the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act: TechAmerica, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, USTelecom, the Information Technology Industry Council, the National Association of Manufacturers, the Financial Services Roundtable, the Computing Research Association, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, and the U.S. Public Policy Council of the Association for Computing Machinery.

Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.


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