WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) today introduced the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium Act to authorize the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to work with the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC) to help prepare for and respond to cybersecurity risks at the national, state, and local levels.
“Our communities must be prepared to defend against the ever-evolving cyber threats they face,” said Sen. Cornyn. “Texas is fortunate to have universities like UTSA and Texas A&M to help educate governments at every level on how to prevent and respond to an impending cyberattack.”
“Schools from the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium, including Vermont’s own Norwich University, have developed expertise in cybersecurity training for countering cyber threats,” said Sen. Patrick Leahy. “We know cyber threats become more manageable when state and local responders have quality training, and this bill opens up opportunities to better plan that training and build expertise.”
The NCPC is comprised of university-based training entities including the University of Texas at San Antonio, Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service, the University of Arkansas, the University of Memphis, and Norwich University.
Under this bill, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security would be authorized to work with the NCPC to:
- Provide training to state and local first responders and officials, develop curriculums, and provide technical assistance;
- Conduct cross-sector cybersecurity training and simulation exercises for state and local governments, critical infrastructure owners and operators, and private industry;
- Help states and communities develop cybersecurity information sharing programs; and
- Help incorporate cybersecurity risk and incident prevention and response into existing state and local emergency plans and continuity of operations plans.