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“Cybersecurity attacks are a direct threat to our economy and job creation, as well as our national security."
Cyber is deeply ingrained in virtually every facet of our lives. We are very dependent upon it, which means that we are very vulnerable to disruptions and attacks. Cyber threats pose a significant risk to our national security as well as to our economy and jobs.
At least 85 percent of what must be protected is owned and operated by the private sector. Government must tread carefully in this area or risk damaging one of our greatest strengths — dynamic, innovate companies and businesses that are the key to our economy and to cybersecurity advances.
House Speaker John Boehner asked me at the start of the 112th Congress to lead an initiative on cybersecurity to focus the efforts of Congress to combat the growing national security and economic threat.
The Task Force represented a broad cross-section of the House Republican Conference and the committees of jurisdiction on the issue of cybersecurity. In addition to myself, Members serving in the group included Reps. Robert Aderholt (R-AL), Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), Mike Coffman (R-CO), Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), Robert Hurt (R-VA), Bob Latta (R-OH), Dan Lungren (R-CA), Mike McCaul (R-TX), Tim Murphy (R-PA), Steve Stivers (R-OH), and Lee Terry (R-NE).
The Task Force formally delivered its report to the Speaker and Majority Leader in October of 2011. The report was an agreement between nine House committees with jurisdiction over cybersecurity issues that could serve as a framework for moving forward with cybersecurity legislation in the House.
This issue is too important to let attempts to find the perfect bill prevent us from taking good, significant steps in the right direction. There is much that everyone agrees on. We should at least do those things and agree to continue to work on issues where we may have differences. Our country's security and economy depend on taking action now.