Katko Takes Action to Secure Critical Infrastructure Networks

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. John Katko (R-NY), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, today introduced the DHS Industrial Control Systems Enhancement Act of 2021 to solidify the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency’s (CISA) lead role in protecting our nation’s critical infrastructure, particularly industrial control systems (ICS), from cyber threats.

The recent attack on a water treatment facility in Oldsmar, Florida, served as an alarming reminder of the threats facing our critical systems. We must ensure our nation’s lead cybersecurity agency has the authorities it needs to protect the control systems that underpin many of our nation’s critical functions.

“As I have said consistently, we need to continue to build centralized cybersecurity capacity with CISA where possible for the entire critical infrastructure community to voluntarily benefit from. The DHS Industrial Control Systems Enhancement Act of 2021 does just that. This important piece of legislation will solidify CISA’s lead role in protecting our nation’s critical infrastructure from cyber threats, particularly to our industrial control systems,” said Ranking Member Katko.

“These systems operate many vital components of our nation’s critical infrastructure and remain under constant attack from cyber criminals and nation state actors. As we saw recently when a Florida water treatment facility was targeted, these attacks can have devastating, real-world consequences. This legislation is a critical first step in the committee’s efforts to ensure CISA has proper resources and authorities to effectively carry out its mission,” Katko continued.

Specifically, the bill amends the Homeland Security Act to require the Director of CISA to maintain capabilities to detect and mitigate threats and vulnerabilities affecting automated control of critical infrastructure, particularly industrial control systems. This includes maintaining cross-sector incident response capabilities to respond to cybersecurity incidents and providing cybersecurity technical assistance to stakeholders. Lastly, the CISA Director is required to collect, coordinate, and provide vulnerability information to the industrial control systems community.

This Katko-led initiative has strong bipartisan support from leading cybersecurity voices in Congress. The bill is co-sponsored by Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS), Cybersecurity Subcommittee Chair Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Cybersecurity Subcommittee Ranking Member Andrew Garbarino (R-NY), and Reps. Don Bacon (R-NE), Kat Cammack (R-FL), Carlos Gimenez (R-FL), Jim Langevin (D-RI), and John Rutherford (R-FL).

Click here to view the text of the bill.

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