Washington, D.C. — The Subcommittee on Technology and the Subcommittee on Research today held a joint hearing to examine cybersecurity research and development (R&D) activities. The hearing reviewed H.R. 756, the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act of 2013, introduced by Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), to reauthorize cybersecurity programs at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas): “National defense in the digital age no longer just means protecting ourselves with arms against enemies who attack with traditional weapons.  It now means protecting America from enemies who launch cyber attacks against our computers and networks. Cyber attacks against U.S. government and private sector networks are on the rise.  In the last few weeks, some of America’s largest companies have been hacked.

“Protecting America’s cyber systems is critical to our economic and national security.  Americans deserve better protection and the federal government can help make sensitive information more secure.  I hope we can learn how to improve the bill today and quickly advance it through this Committee.”

Chairman Smith is a cosponsor of the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act, which coordinates R&D activities to better address evolving cyber threats.  By strengthening agency coordination and cooperation on cybersecurity R&D efforts, the legislation is an important piece of our nation’s overall cybersecurity needs. In addition, the bill strengthens the efforts of NSF and NIST in the areas of cybersecurity technical standards and cybersecurity awareness, education, and workforce development.

The following witnesses testified:

Mr. Michael Barrett, Chief Information Security Officer, PayPal, Inc.
Dr. Frederick R. Chang, President and Chief Operating Officer, 21CT, Inc.
Ms. Terry Benzel, Deputy Director Cyber Networks and Cyber Security, USC Information Sciences Institute.