The U.S. Senate approved legislation that would formally charter a National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC).
The consortium would include the University of Texas at San Antonio, Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service, the University of Arkansas, the University of Memphis, and Norwich University in Vermont.
Under the bill – sponsored by Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and John Cornyn (R-TX) – the NCPC would be authorized to provide training to state and local first responders and officials. It would also conduct cybersecurity training and simulation exercises for state and local governments and private industry. Further, it would help states and communities develop cybersecurity information sharing programs and incorporate cybersecurity risk and incident prevention and response into existing state and local emergency plans.
NCPC is a cooperative effort of universities with expertise in cybersecurity that work with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to develop training and other activities related to cyber emergencies. Norwich University, in Leahy’s home state of Vermont, has long been a leader in cybersecurity training.
“Norwich University has methodically built expertise and national recognition as a national center in the crucial field of cybersecurity training to counter these growing threats,” Leahy said. “Passage of our bill is a bipartisan victory in advancing these efforts to the next levels. I support the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium because we know that cyber threats become more manageable when state and local responders have quality training. Norwich will continue to take a leading role in making that happen.”