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Peters Cosponsors Bill to Establish National Commission on Security and Technology Challenges

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI), a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, today announced that he has cosponsored bipartisan legislation to establish an independent National Commission on Security and Technology Challenges. The digital security Commission will bring together a diverse group of stakeholders - including tech leaders, law enforcement, the intelligence community, privacy and civil liberties advocates, encryption researchers, and global commerce leaders - who will be charged with developing recommendations for maintaining privacy and digital security while also finding ways to keep criminals and terrorists from exploiting these technologies to escape justice. 

“As a member of the Homeland Security Committee, I am working every day to keep Americans safe. I am proud to cosponsor this legislation, which encourages greater dialogue between non-partisan experts in cybersecurity, encryption, law enforcement, and other fields critical to both privacy and national security,” said Senator Peters. “By bringing people together to provide assessments, share recommendations, and get to the root of these complex challenges, we can better protect personal liberties and defend America and our allies against groups that pose serious threats to our safety.”

Introduced by Senator Mark R. Warner (D-VA), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), the legislation would establish a 16-member Commission, which will include a broad range of individuals with specific expertise, appointed in equal numbers by the bipartisan leadership of the House and Senate. The Commission will also include a nonvoting representative selected by the President. Commissioners will be selected from each of the following fields:

  • Cryptography
  • Global commerce and economics
  • Federal law enforcement
  • State and local law enforcement
  • Consumer-facing technology sector
  • Enterprise technology sector
  • Intelligence community
  • Privacy and civil liberties community

The Commission will be tasked with issuing an interim report within six months, and will be required to submit recommendations for policy and practice for Congress to consider within 12 months of the law’s enactment.

The proposal has support from a broad range of stakeholders, including privacy advocates, legal scholars, law enforcement and the intelligence communities, the technology industry, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

As a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, Peters’ top priority is ensuring the safety and security of Americans. Earlier this year, Peters introduced bipartisan legislation to promote better coordination of cybersecurity efforts between Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and state and local governments.  The State and Local Cyber Protection Act will enhance ongoing collaboration efforts between the DHS’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC), which shares information regarding cybersecurity vulnerabilities, incidents, and mitigations with public and private sector partners, including state, local, and tribal governments.