Today, 34 global technology and security companies announced that they have signed a Cybersecurity Tech Accord, which publicly commits them “to protect and empower civilians online and to improve the security, stability and resilience of cyberspace.” The signatories include Cisco, Dell, Facebook, HP, Intuit, and Microsoft.
The text of the Accord references recent events that have put online security at risk, and sets forth four principles:…
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Senators Ed Markey (D-MA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) reintroduced a pair of bills today relating to the cybersecurity of cars and aircraft, which would impose affirmative security, disclosure, and consent requirements on manufacturers and air carriers. The Security and Privacy in Your Car (“SPY Car”) Act and Cybersecurity Standards for Aircraft to Improve Resilience (“Cyber AIR”) Act were each introduced but not enacted in a previous session of Congress. In a joint press release, the Senators noted that the legislation was designed to “implement and improve cybersecurity standards for cars and aircraft.”
The SPY Car Act
The SPY Car Act would require cars manufactured for sale in the U.S. to comply with “reasonable measures to protect against hacking attacks,” including measures to isolate critical software systems from non-critical systems, evaluate security vulnerabilities, and “immediately detect, report, and stop attempts to intercept driving data or control the vehicle.” It would also require “driving data” collected by cars to be “reasonably secured to prevent unauthorized access,” including while such data is in transit to other locations or subsequently stored elsewhere. Violations of these cybersecurity requirements are subject to civil penalties of up to $5,000 per violation.
Continue Reading Senators Reintroduce Cybersecurity Legislation for Cars and Planes
By Ray Biagini and Scott Freling
We have already seen tremendous fallout from recent cyber attacks on Target, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, Sony Pictures, and J.P. Morgan. Now imagine that, instead of an email server or a database of information, a hacker gained access to the controls of a nuclear reactor or a hospital. The potential consequences are devastating: death, injury, mass property destruction, environmental damage, and major utility service and business disruption. Now what if there were a mechanism that would incentivize industry to create and deploy robust and ever-evolving cybersecurity programs and protocols in defense of our nation’s critical infrastructure?
In late 2014, Representative Michael McCaul (R-TX), Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, proposed legislation that would surgically amend the SAFETY Act, which currently offers liability protection to sellers and users of approved anti-terrorism technologies in the event of litigation stemming from acts of terrorism. Rep. McCaul’s amendment would broaden this protection to cybersecurity technologies in the event of “qualifying cyber incidents.” The proposed legislation defines a “qualifying cyber incident” as an unlawful access that causes a “material level of damage, disruption, or casualties severely affecting the [U.S.] population, infrastructure, economy, or national morale, or Federal, State, local, or tribal government functions.” Put simply, under the proposed legislation, a cyber incident could trigger SAFETY Act protection without being deemed an act of terrorism.
Continue Reading SAFETY First: Using the SAFETY Act to Bolster Cybersecurity