Bay Area Lawmaker Leads Cyber Security Debate

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WASHINGTON (KCBS) Cyber security has become one of the hot topics on Capitol Hill and Bay Area Congresswoman Anna Eshoo has been at the center of the debate.

Eshoo, a Democrat who represents the 14th District, sits on the House Intelligence Committee and has been a part of numerous classified hearings about various cyber threats.

“With each day, there are more threats. More that want to hack into our system and when it comes to intelligence, we can’t afford to lose any of it,” Eshoo said. “It needs to be protected.”

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Eshoo is helping lead a growing movement in Congress to pass comprehensive legislation to beef up U.S. cyber defenses.

“We need a thoroughly integrated system which we don’t quite have yet,” she said.

And Eshoo said that integration is key because so much of the cyber security burden lies outside of the federal government.

“About 5 percent of cyber security belongs in the public sector. About 95 percent is in the private sector,” said Eshoo.

Eshoo said she wants to create new avenues to secure federal networks, but also wants a process in place, through which private companies can report cyber security breaches.

Her efforts and those of a variety of lawmakers backing bills in both the House and Senate seem to be gaining momentum, but many privacy advocates are warning that too much federal control in fighting cyber threats could pose new threats to civil liberties and privacy.

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