House Intelligence Committee Chairman: Time Running Out for Senate to Pass CISPA Companion Bill

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) said that time is running out for the Senate to pass its cybersecurity bill. He warned his fellow lawmakers in the chamber that the August recess is fast approaching and that the country needs a law in place as soon as possible.

“If we don’t have something moving by August, I think it gets lost in the haze, and it will be a very long time until we actually get a bill passed that will actually have an impact,” he said at a cybersecurity forum at George Washington University.

The Senate has struggled to pass a companion measure to the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), which passed the House more than a year ago. The various leaks from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden about programs at the National Security Agency have sidelined a lot of these efforts, which had a hard enough time in the first place over concerns about privacy and fourth amendment rights concerns.

Last month, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and ranking member Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) announced that they had reached a deal on a draft bill for the upper chamber, but that legislation has not yet been formally introduced.

Rogers said that he was still "cautiously optimistic that we can find some agreement within the next 30 days to try to get something moving."

He added that if the Senate does pass a bill, "I promise you, it will be the fastest conference committee known to man, because I’ll be the chairman of it."

Finally he pointed to the data breach at Target late last year during that holiday shopping season as a vehicle to help convince the public of the need for a new cyber bill.

"We were hoping that that would be the catalyst for people to understand just how serious this is," Rogers said.

Source: The Hill

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