Capital Roundup: In brief

Officials laud potential program

IT industry and government officials at a June 7 congressional hearing praised a proposed federal program that would evaluate technical solutions to homeland security challenges.

The program, proposed in legislation introduced by Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., would create a multiagency group responsible for receiving, evaluating and routing technology proposals to the right government agencies, said Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., co-sponsor of the bill, H.R. 4629.

"I think we need that regardless of the need to create the Department of Homeland Security," Harman said.

House OKs info-sharing bill

The Homeland Security Information Sharing Act, H.R. 4598, a bill that would help federal, state and local agencies to share counterterrorism information, is one step closer to becoming law.

The House Judiciary subcommittee on crime, terrorism and homeland security approved the bill. The legislation directs the president, attorney general and director of central intelligence to create procedures for sharing classified or sensitive threat information among federal, state and local officials. The bill requires agencies to take classified details out of information before sharing it.

Cybersecurity report published

The congressional Joint Economic Committee has published a report, "Security in the Information Age: New Challenges, New Strategies." The report is a group of essays covering topics such as cybersecurity policy, critical infrastructure protection and counterintelligence, and risk management in the delivery of critical infrastructure services.

The essays "examine how cybersecurity has become such an important component of our economic and national security, and the implications for economic and security policy," said Rep. Jim Saxton, R-N.J., committee chairman.

Essay authors include John Tritak, director of the Critical Infrastructure Assurance Office, and William Gravell, director of information assurance and critical infrastructure protection at TRW Inc.; The report can be found at www.house.gov/jec.

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