Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, Rockefeller added, "I promise to continue working towards common ground so we can do our jobs and pass cybersecurity legislation later this year when Congress returns."
On July 25, Rockefeller gave a speech on the Senate floor, arguing his legislation is essential to protect electric grids, water and transportation systems and gas pipelines, as well as communications and finance networks.
All of those systems, he argued, could become victimized by "cyber terrorism" possibly initiated by someone "sitting at a computer across the world."
Because of the Internet, he added, "our most important personal information, including our credit card numbers and our financial data, is now accessible via the Internet and is stolen through data breaches that occur all too often."
Robert Mueller, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Rockefeller said, "told Congress that the cyber threat will soon overcome terrorism as the top national security focus of the FBI."
Rockefeller's proposed legislation would "create a National Cybersecurity Council that will include representatives from across the government to find the critical infrastructure that is the most vulnerable to cyber attack."
The legislation would then promote the development of "cybersecurity practices for those systems, in cooperation with the private sector."
Reach Paul J. Nyden at pjny...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5164.