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Pallone Praises Committee Passage of Eight Bipartisan Cybersecurity Bills

Jul 21, 2021
Press Release

Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) released the following statement today after the full Committee voted to advance eight cybersecurity bills to the full House of Representatives:

“Today I am proud that the Energy and Commerce Committee came together to pass urgently needed legislation that will promote more secure networks and supply chains, bringing us one step closer to a safer and more secure wireless future. Collectively, these bipartisan bills will educate the public, smaller providers, and small businesses on how best to protect their telecommunications networks and supply chains – all while improving the coordination and resources necessary to support them. I thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for their hard work on these bills and look forward to continuing to work together to get this legislation passed in the House.” 

The Committee favorably reported the following bills:

H.R. 2685, the “Understanding Cybersecurity of Mobile Networks Act,” was introduced by Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL). The bill would require the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to examine and report on the cybersecurity of mobile service networks and the vulnerability of these networks and mobile devices to cyberattacks and surveillance conducted by adversaries. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 3919, the “Secure Equipment Act of 2021,” was introduced by Reps. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Eshoo. The bill would direct the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to adopt rules to prohibit equipment authorization from companies on the Commission’s “Covered List.” The bill would prevent further integration and sales of devices from companies such as Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hikvision, and Dahua – all Chinese state-backed or directed firms – in the United States. The bill would specifically ensure the rules required do not apply retroactively. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4028, the “Information and Communication Technology Strategy Act,” was introduced by Reps. Billy Long (R-MO), Abigail Spanberger (D-VA), Buddy Carter (R-GA), and Jerry McNerney (D-CA). The bill would direct the Secretary of Commerce, working through the Assistant Secretary for NTIA, to submit to Congress within one year a report analyzing the state of economic competitiveness of trusted vendors in the information and communication technology supply chain, identifying which components or technologies are critical or vulnerable, and identifying which components or technologies on which U.S. networks depend. It would also require the Secretary to submit to Congress, within six months after the report is submitted, a whole-of-government strategy to ensure the competitiveness of trusted vendors in the United States. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4032, the “Open RAN Outreach Act,” was introduced by Reps. Colin Allred (D-TX), Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ), Brett Guthrie (R-KY), and Richard Hudson (R-NC). The bill directs the NTIA Administrator to provide outreach and technical assistance to small communications network providers regarding Open Radio Access Networks (Open-RAN) and other open network architectures. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4045, the “Future Uses of Technology Upholding Reliable and Enhanced Networks Act” or the “FUTURE Networks Act,” was introduced by Reps. Mike Doyle (D-PA), Bill Johnson (R-OH), and Lucy McBath (D-GA). The bill would require the FCC to create a 6G (sixth generation) Task Force.  The bill stipulates that the membership of the Task Force shall be appointed by the FCC Chair, and that the Task Force membership be composed, if possible, of representatives from trusted companies (meaning those not controlled by foreign adversaries), trusted public interest groups, and trusted government representatives with at least one representative from federal, state, local, and tribal governments. The Task Force would have to submit a report to Congress on 6G wireless technology, including the possible uses, strengths, and limitations of 6G. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4046, the “NTIA Policy and Cybersecurity Coordination Act,” was introduced by Reps. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Susan Wild (D-PA), and John Curtis (R-UT). The bill would authorize the existing NTIA Office of Policy Analysis and Development and rename it the Office of Policy Development and Cybersecurity. In addition to codifying the responsibilities of NTIA in administering the information sharing program in Section 8 of the Secure and Trusted Communications Act, the Office would be assigned functions to coordinate and develop policy regarding the cybersecurity of communications networks. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4055, the “American Cybersecurity Literacy Act,” was introduced by Reps. Kinzinger, Eshoo, Marc Veasey (D-TX), Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA), and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL). The bill would require NTIA to develop and conduct a cybersecurity literacy campaign to educate U.S. individuals about common cybersecurity risks and best practices. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

H.R. 4067, the “Communications Security Advisory Act of 2021,” was introduced by Reps. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI), Kurt Schrader (D-OR), and Tim Walberg (R-MI). The bill would codify an existing FCC advisory council, the Communications Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council.  It also requires biennial reporting to the FCC and public with recommendations to improve communications networks on such issues. The bill was passed, as amended, by a voice vote.

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