US lawmakers propose giving Energy authority over utilities during cyber emergencies

Federal officials, lawmakers and industry leaders have reached consensus that any forthcoming cybersecurity legislation should grant the Energy Department authority to order utilities to take action when there is an emergency threat to critical elements of the electricity grid. Energy is one of many agencies currently brokering a sweeping proposal to guard the government, consumers and international partners against cyber predators.”We’re in agreement that when we are talking about the imminent threats, it’s DOE that has that authority; they don’t need to wait for anyone,” said Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, ranking member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, at a hearing on a draft bill to protect the nation’s power supply from cyberattacks.
http://www.nextgov.com/nextgov/ng_20110505_1094.php

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