IBM Letter of Support for House Cybersecurity Legislation

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IBM today sent a letter to Speaker of the House John Boehner and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi expressing support for two bills that would foster more sharing of cyber threat information, a crucial element of the fight against evolving online attacks.

The Honorable John Boehner
Speaker
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC  20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Minority Leader
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC  20515

Dear Speaker Boehner and Minority Leader Pelosi,

IBM strongly supports passage of two cybersecurity threat information sharing bills (H.R. 1560 and H.R. 1731) to be considered this week by the House of Representatives.

H.R. 1560, the Protect Cyber Networks Act and H.R. 1731, the National Cybersecurity Protection Advancement Act, passed the Intelligence and Homeland Security Committees respectively with strong bipartisan support.  Furthermore, they are strongly supported by businesses in a broad cross section of industry sectors.

IBM commends the Intelligence and Homeland Security Committees for their outreach to industry and privacy and civil liberty advocates to produce two very effective bills.  Cyber attacks can be a significant threat to individual privacy, and together these bills provide companies with greater capabilities to defend valuable assets and protect data.

The sharing of cyber threat indicators provides organizations with visibility and insight into threats that they would not have otherwise.  When combined with the power of advanced analytics, such data can deliver some of the most meaningful insights for protecting potential victims of cyber attacks.  Because attackers can no longer be fenced out completely with firewalls, the real-time discovery of anomalies and security events within a company’s infrastructure is a key element of network defense.

IBM supports the significant privacy protections in both of these measures, which make clear that the authorized information sharing will be focused on technical threat data, not personal information.  Sharing would occur through a civilian agency, which we believe is appropriate, and no new government surveillance authorities are authorized.  The legal clarity and liability protections provided by the bills will encourage greater information sharing and improve defensive measures taken to protect private information and critical networks.

We urge you to support H.R. 1560 and H.R. 1731 when they are considered by the House this week.

Sincerely,
Christopher A. Padilla
Vice President, Government and Regulatory Affairs

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Click here to download the letter.

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