WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) issued the following statement after news reports stated that numerous Federal agencies were hacked by Russia.
"The scope of this hacking operation is alarming and demonstrates what we already know: Russia is not our ally and Vladimir Putin is not our friend. Cybersecurity is a national security imperative. The U.S. Government needs to be more proactive in fending off cyberattacks and protecting sensitive information from foreign actors. This hack was far-reaching, and we need to meet this threat head-on. It doesn't help that the Trump Administration eliminated the job of National Cybersecurity Coordinator in 2018 and fired the Department of Homeland Security's Cyber Chief after he oversaw a safe election. I expect the incoming Biden Administration will recognize that our country's national security relies on better and more nimble cybersecurity. I also believe Congress needs to do more to stay on top of these threats.
"I am working on legislation to ensure that vendors doing business with the United States government maintain a vulnerability disclosure policy. Additionally, I believe Congress should create a Select Committee on Cybersecurity. Presently, no single committee deals with cybersecurity, and we need to treat this issue like the ongoing threat it is. Having a Committee dedicated exclusively to cybersecurity would allow Members to drill down and bring a variety of perspectives to bear."
In September 2018, Congress passed the Hack the Department of Homeland Security Act, which was introduced by Reps. Lieu and Scott Taylor (R-VA), and Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Rob Portman (R-OH) and Kamala Harris (D-CA). The bill established a bug bounty pilot program – modeled off of similar programs at the Department of Defense and major tech companies. The program utilizes“white-hat” or ethical hackers to help identify unique and undiscovered vulnerabilities in the DHS networks and data systems.