The NAM-supported Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (H.R. 3523) recently passed the U.S. House of Representatives with strong bipartisan support. This bill is the first step toward better securing our nation and our economy from emerging threats in cyberspace. The focus now shifts to the Senate which has signaled it will take up cyber legislation later this month.

Manufacturers supported this legislation because it would permit the public and private sector to share cyber threat intelligence with each other. As owners and operators of the vast majority of our country’s critical infrastructure, manufacturers are sometimes the first line of cyber-defense in today’s interconnected world. If able to provide and receive intelligence – while vigorously protecting the privacy of their customers, suppliers, and employees – the private sector will be better able to protect itself from those with malicious intent.

What this legislation does not do is create a new bureaucracy or a regulatory regime. It does not give the government any ability to monitor or censor private networks. In fact, no new authority is granted to the government. That includes the intelligence community, the Department of Defense, and the National Security Agency. Most importantly, company participation is completely voluntary with no entity required to participate or share information.

There is broad support across the business community for this NAM-endorsed approach. The Senate now has an opportunity to send a bill to the President for his signature. Manufacturers know that our economic security is directly related to our cybersecurity. It is time for the Senate to act on legislation that will strengthen our nation’s cybersecurity and not create a new and unnecessary regulatory burden.

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