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House Passes Garbarino Bill To Strengthen Small Business Cyber Defenses

November 2, 2021

The legislation will empower small businesses on Long Island and across the country with resources to combat rising cybersecurity threats

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Moments ago, the House of Representatives passedH.R. 4515, the Small Business Development Center Cyber Training Act of 2021 which was introduced by Congressman Andrew R. Garbarino (R-NY-02) in July 2021. H.R. 4515 passed the House with strong bipartisan support by a vote of 409 – 14.

Earlier today, Rep. Garbarino spoke on the House Floor in support of his bill, saying in part, "Cyberattacks are on the rise and small businesses are increasingly vulnerable. Nearly fifty percent of cyberattacks are directed at small businesses, which can result in devastating financial, intellectual property, and reputational loss. Small businesses are targeted because they often lack the resources or technical knowledge needed to implement and maintain cybersecurity defenses. This bill combats this by helping Small Business Development Centers become better equipped to assist small businesses with their cybersecurity and cyber strategy needs.

"Combating cyberattacks and putting small businesses in the best position to prevent and respond to cyberattacks has become one of my top priorities as a Member of Congress. As both a member of the Small Business Committee and Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security’s Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Innovation, I have seen how difficult it is for small businesses to arm themselves against these kinds of attacks. This bill provides much needed resources to help small businesses improve their cyber preparedness in the face of rising threats. I urge my colleagues to support and pass H.R. 4515."

The Small Business Development Center Cyber Training Act would help Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) become better trained to assist small businesses with their cyber security and cyber strategy needs by establishing a cyber counseling certification program. This legislation would authorize the SBA to reimburse SBDCs for employee certification costs up to $350,000 per fiscal year. It would amend section 21 of the Small Business Act and utilize existing federal resources to cover the reimbursement costs.

Cosponsors of the bipartisan legislation include Representatives Dwight Evans (D-PA-03), Steve Chabot (R-OH-01), Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA-06), Dean Phillips (D-MN-03), Claudia Tenney, (R-NY-22), Antonio Delgado (D-NY-19), Tom Rice (R-SC-07), and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ-05).