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Mr. PAULSEN. Mr. Chair, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
Mr. Chair, last month at a Senate hearing outlining the threats facing our security, it was the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, who warned that the intelligence community is seeing indications that some terror groups are interested in ``developing offensive cyber capabilities, and cyber criminals are using a growing black market to sell cyber tools that fall into the hands of both state and nonstate actors.''
Mr. Chair, just last week in Chairman Rogers' committee, it was Director Clapper who also said, ``As more and more state and nonstate actors gain cyber expertise, its importance and reach as a global threat cannot be overstated.''
Our society has increasingly become reliant on modern technology in nearly every aspect of our daily lives, making the possibility of a cyber attack that much more dangerous. Under cyber terrorist or cyber crime, industries as diverse as financial systems, transportation, social media, and even utilities could be negatively impacted. A successful attack could disrupt the lives of Americans and result in other unpredictable consequences.
We do know the threat is real. We've already experienced attacks on our Nation's financial institutions and have faced hackers trying to gain access to the Pentagon and our Nation's critical infrastructure. According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, the number of U.S. organizations believed to have been hacked has dramatically increased in just the last 6 years. Back in 2006, there were about 5,500 separate attacks noted, compared to 48,500 in 2012. As a January 2013 U.S. Government report found, cyber attacks and intrusions in critical energy infrastructures rose 52 percent between 2011 and 2012 alone. That's in a 1-year period, Mr. Chair.
Cyber weapons will likely continue to be used by a greater number of countries and other actors as a form of warfare. Between 20 and 30 states already have the capability to launch cyber warfare, including China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea and others, as has been stated as part of the debate on this bill.
Fortunately, these attacks have so far been thwarted by our intelligence before significant and lasting damage could occur, but it would be unwise to choose to act alone in the face of the growing fact of cyber criminality. In order to produce effective outcomes, our intelligence community must continue to promote collaboration among experts and across boards.
Just as we conduct our drills and our training exercises with our allies, we need to work together to share our best practices to keep our citizens safe from cyber attacks. My amendment would call on Congress to encourage international cooperation when it comes to cybersecurity.
This amendment would not bind the United States to working with other
nations, but it simply does promote doing so in situations that would be mutually beneficial. Such collaboration would more effectively allow us to combat cyber terrorism and threats by sharing resources and using proven security techniques when possible.
Mr. Chair, in the end, by working together on an issue that poses a threat to all of us, the international community will benefit from the exchange of experiences and potential solutions.
Mr. Chair, I just want to thank the gentleman from Michigan and the gentleman from Maryland for their leadership on this very challenging issue. I know that looking forward we will continue to see success in battling these real threats.
With that, I reserve the balance of my time.
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