Maryland Cybersecurity Council Starts Work

Maryland Cybersecurity Council

[Capital News Service photo by Naomi Eide]

The Maryland Cybersecurity Council, with more than 40 members from both the public and private sector, met for the first time on Nov. 10, 2015, in Hyattsville, Md. The Council plans to develop statewide guidelines for a coordinated response in the event of cybersecurity attacks. Here is an excerpt from the Capital News Service:

State Sen. Susan Lee, D-Montgomery, co-chair of the former commission and a member of the council, said she wants the new panel to work to both prevent cybersecurity risks and take advantage of the cyber job markets in the state.

Both the NSA and the U.S. Cyber Command are located in Fort Meade, Maryland.

“We could be, we should be, the epicenter of cyber innovation and jobs. But you have to make it a priority,” Lee said.

The primary sponsor for the bill establishing the council, Lee originally wanted to extend the life of the commission beyond its three-and-a-half year lifespan but came across opposition, she said. “No one wants to get regulated or (to) change things.”

“Maybe it’s because they don’t understand the gravity of this problem,” Lee said, citing potential threats to both government and commercial industries.

“What if they attacked a utility or public service carrier? That would be horrible,” Lee said. “That would really impact public safety.”

Senator Susan Lee represents Maryland’s District 16, which includes Bethesda, Chevy Chase, Friendship Heights, Potomac, Rockville, Cabin John, and Glen Echo. She was elected to the Maryland State Senate in November 2014 after serving 13 years in the Maryland House of Delegates, and is the first Asian American senator elected to the Maryland Senate and first minority senator in the Montgomery County Delegation to Annapolis.

During the 2015 legislative session in Annapolis, Senator Lee served as a Member of the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee; Joint Committee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology and Biotechnology; and the Maryland Cybersecurity Council and the Workgroup on Youth Victims of Human Trafficking, which were both created by two laws Senator Lee introduced and passed. The Council will build on the landmark, first-ever laws passed by the Commission on Maryland Cybersecurity Innovation and Excellence which she served and led as Co-Chair. The Council will not only provide legislative and policy recommendations for protecting Maryland against large scale cyber-attacks that can paralyze our government, economy and vital infrastructures, but also make Maryland the Epicenter of Cyber innovations and jobs, a knowledge base industry that will help the state globally compete and sustain its future.

For more on Senator Lee’s legislative accomplishments, read her:

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