NAM Backs DHS Call to Boost Industry and Government Cooperation on Cybersecurity

This week, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) hosted a National Cybersecurity Summit in New York City to bring government leaders and private industry together to underscore the need for greater collaboration to improve our nation’s cybersecurity. Vice President Mike Pence called cybersecurity a shared responsibility and a civic duty, and DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said cyber threats now collectively outweigh physical threats to the homeland. Government and business leaders agreed a collective defense was more effective than going it alone in the face of criminal and nation-state cyber attacks.

The administration used the occasion to announce the creation of a National Risk Management Center at DHS to foster voluntary public-private cooperation with industry partners. The new Center will provide a single point of access for private-sector actors seeking out federal resources to bolster their cyber posture, analyze incoming threat intelligence and assist with response in the event of a cyber incident. Today’s cyber attacks are not confined to certain companies or even certain industries, and the new Center will analyze risks that cut across sectors.

The National Association of Manufacturers has long called for federal cybersecurity policies that prioritize public-private partnerships over prescriptive regulatory regimes. We applaud the department’s efforts to operationalize this approach through the initiatives announced this week, and we look forward to working with DHS to advance collaboration between manufacturers and the government on cybersecurity.

We will continue to call for policies that properly advance respective government and industry cooperation in the digital domain. For example, the federal government can improve the quality and speed of information sharing with the private sector and provide further assurances that disclosure will not be met with an adverse regulatory response. Also, enhanced federal leadership with the right balance can lead to policies that incentivize further investment in cybersecurity and focus on deterring malicious actors from targeting our companies.

Industry can innovate and work to develop best practices in a way that ensures cybersecurity improvements extend across sectors, to include small and medium operators within their ecosystems.

Manufacturers are innovators and have pioneered the development of connected devices that harness the Internet of Things to transform shop floors. Manufacturing investment in research and development is unparalleled, and technical solutions to ensure their systems are resilient in a complex threat environment are the order of business. We need to ensure our laws and policies allow this innovation to continue—for the benefit of our competitiveness, our security and our collective defense.

Stephanie Hall

Stephanie Hall is the Director of Innovation Policy at National Association of Manufacturers.

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