Senate Commerce Committee postpones cybersecurity hearing

May 12, 2011
Cyber Security, FedCyber Wire
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via The Hill

The Senate Commerce Committee has postponed indefinitely a major hearing on cybersecurity.

Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) announced that the hearing scheduled for Thursday on cyber vulnerabilities in the private sector will not be held. The FBI, Verizon and IBM were all scheduled to testify.

The debate around cybersecurity has shown signs of heating up after Senate Democrats indicated they have settled last year’s stalemate over which committee will have jurisdiction over cybersecurity. Both the Commerce and Homeland Security Committees have lobbied for oversight authority.

The White House has promised to unveil its legislative recommendations for cybersecurity in the near future, which will likely include some form of data breach notification.

Deputy assistant attorney general Jamie Weinstein indicated at a hearing on Wednesday that the government will also ask wireless firms to hold onto customer data for longer so law enforcement can identify the IP addresses of users involved in investigations.

Senate leadership has indicated a preference for putting DHS in charge of protecting the government’s civilian networks, but House Republicans have shown a preference for allowing the military and intelligence agencies to take the lead on cyber defense issues.

Republicans also appear unlikely to support any legislation that adds more to the plate of DHS. Sources have consistently maintained to The Hill that a comprehensive cybersecurity bill is unlikely to reach the president’s desk, making it likely the less controversial provisions will be attached to other bills.

Story here.