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Senate Cybersecurity Bill Back in Play

When John Rockefeller and Olympia Snowe introduced a sweeping cybersecurity overhaul bill last April, the opposition was swift and vocal. Now it's back on the table, with the most controversial provisions left on the cutting room floor.

The senators are planning to bring the Cybersecurity Act to a markup next week, eSecurity Planet reports.


Lawmakers reintroduced sweeping cybersecurity legislation in the Senate this week, stripping out some of the most controversial provisions that rankled privacy advocates and other critics when the bill first appeared last April.

The Cybersecurity Act, co-sponsored by Sens. John Rockefeller (D-W.V.) and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), would establish a framework for government partnership with the private sector to shore up critical infrastructure and codify procedures for the federal response to a "cybersecurity emergency."

But absent from the latest of several revisions to the bill is the controversial provision that would have authorized the president to shut down private-sector networks in the event of a major attack.

Instead, the substitute amendment of the bill would direct the president to develop response plans in concert with the private sector, and report to Congress within 48 hours of declaring a cybersecurity emergency. In revising the section detailing responsibilities and authorities, the lawmakers took pains to address the concerns of civil libertarians who blasted the original "kill-switch" provision authorizing the federal shutdown of private networks.

Read the full story at eSecurity Planet:
Cybersecurity Bill Returns to Senate