US Congress' role in IT security debated

    Date10 Nov 2003
    CategoryGovernment
    3702
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    A U.S. House of Representatives member proposed last Thursday that the U.S. Congress require every computer to have antivirus software installed, but IT security experts disagreed with that suggestion and other ways for the government to encourage cybersecurity among private companies . . . A U.S. House of Representatives member proposed last Thursday that the U.S. Congress require every computer to have antivirus software installed, but IT security experts disagreed with that suggestion and other ways for the government to encourage cybersecurity among private companies and individual users.

    Representative Charles Bass, a New Hampshire Republican, questioned during a hearing if Congress should require antivirus software to be installed on every U.S. computer to counter the billions of dollars in damage done by viruses and worms in 2003 alone.

    "Is it time for the federal government to develop some kind of Internet security agency that would develop standards for all legitimate software, require automatic update and patching and establish a base level for every single computer in the country?" Bass said during a hearing on computer viruses in the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee and Telecommunications and the Internet. "Is there any reason why any computer in this country shouldn't have some kind of antivirus software on it as a requirement?"

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