Senators Hassan, Cornyn Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Federal Cyber Workforce

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH), chair of the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Spending Oversight, and John Cornyn (R-TX) introduced a bipartisan bill to create two new cyber training programs within the federal government to help strengthen American cyber defenses and bolster the federal government’s cyber workforce. One of those programs will be housed at the Department of Veterans Affairs to specifically recruit veterans for cybersecurity training programs.

“Our national cybersecurity infrastructure is woefully lacking, as evidenced by the SolarWinds breach,” Senator Hassan said. “In order to bolster our cyber defenses and protect our critical infrastructure, we need to increase the number of cybersecurity professionals in the federal government. This bipartisan bill will also help address the workforce challenges in the veteran community by standing up a cyber-training program at the VA to help veterans secure good-paying, stable jobs, and I urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this legislation.”

“Cyber threats are evolving each day, and we must have a workforce prepared to respond,” said Senator Cornyn. “By harnessing the experience of our veterans and creating more opportunities for hands-on learning, this legislation would help ensure we are ready to fend off cyberattacks from our adversaries.”

The Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Expansion Act establishes two new programs:

  1. A cybersecurity registered apprenticeship program in the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)
  2. A pilot program within the Department of Veterans Affairs to give cybersecurity training to veterans

To see bill text, click here.

Senator Hassan is working on a bipartisan basis to strengthen federal, state, and local cybersecurity, and previously teamed up with Senator Cornyn to successfully include a bipartisan amendment in the most recent National Defense Authorization Act to create a cybersecurity state coordinator in each state. In January, Senators Hassan and Cornyn also introduced a bipartisan bill to support the National Guard’s role in helping state and local governments improve their cybersecurity infrastructure.