US Congress Approves Strengthening American Cybersecurity Act

Security Intelligence -

US Congress Approves Strengthening American Cybersecurity Act

Federal agencies and critical infrastructure owners and operators may need to change how they respond to cyber attacks. The U.S. Congress passed new legislation mandating they report attacks within 72 hours. In addition, it requires them to report ransomware payments within 24 hours.

Provision Impacts 16 Critical Infrastructure Sectors

This new federal legislation was also influenced by the ongoing war in Ukraine. The Strengthening American Cybersecurity Act was first approved by the Senate in early March. Later, house lawmakers packaged the reporting clause into a larger omnibus spending bill. The Senate also passed this by a large margin earlier this month. The new bill now awaits President Joe Biden’s signature for approval.

The legislation targets organizations across 16 federally designated critical infrastructure sectors, including energy, financial, manufacturing and health care services. The larger omnibus bill includes some $14 billion in emergency assistance to Ukraine in its defense against Russia, with lawmakers often citing the rise of cyber threats in the conflict. 

The provision includes further assistance for the departments of Defense, State, Justice, Treasury, Commerce and others. They will receive technological and continuity-of-government aid,

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