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House Tees Up Another Cybersecurity Hearing

The House Energy & Commerce Committee's Communications
Subcommittee has scheduled its next hearing on cybersecurity for March 28, its
third in what it signaled would be a series of hearings.

There is no witness list yet, but the hearing will examine
the role of the government in protecting networks, particularly how it is
working with the private sector and how to improve that relationship.

The subcommittee held its first hearing on the cybersecurity
issue last month and signaled there would be more to come. That hearing focused
on private sector efforts to protect their networks. One piece of advice for
the government from James Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International
Studies was that it was going to have to pay more attention to cable companies
and other ISPs as the responsibility for cybersecurity shifted from the edge
and consumers to service providers.

That was followed by a March 7 hearing featuring Comcast,
CenturyLink and AT&T, who all warned Congress that the best thing
government can do to help industry thwart increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks
would be to boost communication, better educate the public and protect networks
from liability for sharing info with each other and government.

The FCC has also proposed a voluntary code of conduct for
dealing with cyberattacks like botnets and malware.

In the Senate, two cybersecurity bills have been introduced
this session, both of which would provide for more communication and
cooperation between government and industry, but the Democratic-backed bill
would have the Department of Homeland Security come up with enforceable network
security requirements, something the Republicans do not support.