Security Experts:

House Passes ICS Cybersecurity Training Bill

The US House of Representatives has passed a new cybersecurity bill named the “Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity Training Act.”

The bill was introduced in May by Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), and it was approved by the House last week. Swalwell said the goal of the legislation is to help strengthen the US’s cybersecurity protections “in light of increased Russian cyber threats.”

Specifically, the Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity Training Act would amend the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to authorize the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to establish a cybersecurity training initiative focusing on industrial control systems (ICS).

The bill aims to provide the IT workforce with free ICS security training. This includes virtual and in-person training and courses that would be available at different skill levels to help participants develop and strengthen their skills.

The courses will cover ICS cyber defense strategies and they will be available to both government agencies and private sector entities.

Learn more about security initiatives focusing on industrial control systems at  SecurityWeek’s 2022 ICS Cyber Security Conference

If the bill becomes law, the House and Senate will receive yearly reports describing the courses and participants. The reports will also include information on the plans to expand access to the training, as well as recommendations for strengthening the state of ICS education and training.

“With the increased threat of Russian cyberattacks, we must be cognizant of cyberwarfare from state-sponsored actors,” Swalwell said. “This bill would help train our information technology professionals in the federal government, national laboratories, and private sector to better defend against damaging foreign attacks.”

The lawmaker introduced the bill after the US government issued a warning in April over a Russia-linked piece of malware named Incontroller/Pipedream that is designed to manipulate and disrupt industrial processes in energy facilities by targeting ICS.

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.