January 13, 2015

Sen. Whitehouse Applauds President’s Cyber Proposal

Washington, DC – Today President Obama announced a legislative proposal to combat cyber threats by, among other things, encouraging greater sharing of information between the public and private sectors, and by criminalizing the sale of botnets – networks of infected computers that are used to carry out cyber attacks and other criminal acts.  U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the following statement regarding the proposal:

“With each passing month, the urgent need for the United States to strengthen its defenses against cyber attacks becomes more clear.  Hackers working for foreign governments and terrorist organizations, organized criminal enterprises, and lone wolfs threaten the integrity of our computer networks, our personal privacy, and our national security.  Encouraging more information sharing between the government and private companies will strengthen our cyber defenses and could disrupt the next Sony attack.  And cracking down on the sale of botnets will help put a stop to one of the leading cyber threats facing Americans.  I thank the President for releasing these proposals and look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass comprehensive cybersecurity legislation.”

Last year Senator Whitehouse chaired a Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on botnets, and announced that he and Senator Lyndsey Graham (R-SC) would be working on bipartisan legislation to address the issue.  Whitehouse and Graham also held a hearing to examine trade-secret theft and released a discussion draft of legislation to address that issue.  In 2010 Whitehouse chaired the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Cyber Task Force, and in 2012 he was heavily involved in negotiations on a bipartisan, comprehensive cybersecurity bill. 


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