As chairman of the U.S. Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is championing a proposal to help small businesses with cybersecurity.
At the end of last month, Rubio teamed up with Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., to bring out the “Small Business Cybersecurity Assistance Act" which would let Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) use grants from the Small Business Administration (SBA) for cybersecurity training, including working with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The proposal brings in recommendations from the “Small Business Development Center Cyber Strategy” which DHS and SBA released in March.
On Monday, Rubio weighed in on why he was backing the proposal.
“As technology continues to play an integral role in the way business is conducted in the 21st century economy, we must equip our small businesses with the tools they need to combat cyber criminals and protect their networks,” Rubio said. “Cyber criminals and state-sponsored foreign hackers continue to target small businesses’ online systems, paralyzing their networks and ability to operate. This bipartisan bill ensures that small businesses have greater access to critical resources and training to better protect their networks before a cyber-attack occurs. I appreciate working with Senator Peters to address this ongoing issue, and look forward to the Senate Small Business Committee’s continued bipartisan effort to comprehensively reauthorize the Small Business Act.”
“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, employing tens of millions of Americans nationwide,” Peters said. “As we’ve seen in recent years, a breach at a small business not only has devastating consequences for that company’s future, it can also be the doorway for breaches of larger companies. Yet too many small business owners say they lack the resources they need to safeguard their businesses and customers from hackers, fraudsters, and cybercriminals. This commonsense legislation will help ensure small businesses can access much-needed information and training to secure their systems from malicious cyber-attacks.”
The bill was sent to the Small Business Committee. So far, there is no companion bill in the House.