Congress Set to Finalize Major Cybersecurity Information-Sharing Legislation
Before adjourning for the holidays, lawmakers could move on compromise cybersecurity legislation after weeks of informal negotiations to secure final language. The measure is expected to merge three separate bills aimed at increasing information sharing between the government and businesses. Ongoing debate over several privacy provisions were said to have held up consideration last week, though Congressional leadership and the White House reportedly began review of final text at the end of last week.
Despite this recent progress, only a handful of legislative days remain between now and the end of the year. Any final cybersecurity language could end up attached to an omnibus spending bill, the text of which could be released as early as Monday.
House Passes Measure Tightening Visa Waiver Program, Next Steps Unclear
Last week, the House overwhelmingly passed legislation overhauling the Visa Waiver Program, which permits citizens from approved countries to enter the United States visa-free for 90 days. The Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 (H.R. 158) was approved by a vote of 407 in favor to 19 against. Despite the measure’s overwhelming support in that chamber, it remains unclear whether its provisions could be folded into the omnibus appropriations measure currently under negotiation due to differences between the House-passed bill and a similar measure introduced by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) in the Senate.
This Week’s Hearings: