Jan. 31, 2024 – Sen. Nick Miller (D-Lehigh/Northampton) announced today the pending introduction of legislation aimed at enhancing cybersecurity measures to safeguard critical infrastructure within the commonwealth. The proposed bill is set to address and fortify protection against cyberthreats in the wake of recent incidents targeting 911 centers, utilities, the electric grid and other IT systems.
In an era where digital threats pose unprecedented challenges, Miller recognizes the urgency of fortifying our essential state and local services against cyberattacks. The legislation, set to be introduced in the current session, will allocate additional funding to help implement state-of-the-art cybersecurity measures with the flexibility to be specifically tailored to various networks.
“Ensuring the security and resilience of our critical infrastructure is paramount to safeguarding public safety and maintaining the uninterrupted operation of vital services,” stated Miller. “This proposed legislation underscores our commitment to staying ahead of emerging cyberthreats and bolstering our state’s defenses against potential disruptions.”
There have been recent targeted attacks on the Municipal Water Authority of Aliquippa, the Washington County Court Case Management System and the Bucks County 911 emergency system. While authorities are still investigating the depth of exposure, we should have systems already in place. Additionally, there are new requirements being placed on federally regulated entities, like our regional airports, in regard to cyber security and these mandated requirements are in need of funding.
Miller emphasized the collaborative nature of the proposed legislation, stating, “This is a collective effort I will focus on throughout the state budget planning process ahead. It must involve broad coordination between government agencies, private sector partners and cybersecurity experts. Together, we can support the installment of a resilient defense against evolving cyberthreats.”
As the legislative session continues into 2024, Miller said he anticipates bipartisan support for this crucial initiative and is committed to fostering a safer and more secure future for the residents and businesses of the commonwealth.