Amendments Abound for Cybersecurity Bill

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Through early Monday evening, 21 amendments had been received for S 3414, the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 that is getting vetted this week in the Senate.

Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Me.) had the most amendments at presstime with nine proposed changes, including attempting to add a provision that would allow FCC commissioners to add an electrical engineer or computer scientist to the staff. It would also require the FCC to team with the National Academy of Sciences on a study of the FCC's "technical policy decision-making and the existing technical personnel at the FCC."

The goal is to determine whether the commission has the resources to evaluate technical impacts of its ratings and the timeliness of its decision-making, then recommend how to streamline that process.

The study would also compare FCC decision-making processes with those of regulatory bodies in Europe, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom.

Among her other amendments was one that would require evaluation of the implementation of Domain Name System Security Extensions, plus a handful that appeared to be directly related to the bill.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid agreed to allow amendments to the bill so long as they were germane to the underlying bill, which provides for cybersecurity standards and protections from liability for companies that share cybersecurity information.

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