House Passes Bill Expanding DHS’ Power to Block Risky Contractors from Government Networks

The House passed legislation Tuesday that would dramatically broaden the Homeland Security Department’s power to block contractors and subcontractors that officials determine present cybersecurity and national security risks to the department’s technology supply chain.

The bill, which is modeled on an authority already granted to the Defense Department, comes after Congress took action in the past year to boot the Russian anti-virus maker Kaspersky Lab and the Chinese telecom firms Huawei and ZTE from federal networks.

“There is no question that nation-states and criminal actors are constantly trying to exploit U.S. government and private sector systems to steal information or to insert potentially harmful hardware or software,” the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said on the House floor.

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Source: NextGov