In a letter to House leadership, Reps. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., Cedric Richmond, D-La., Derek Kilmer, D-Wash., and Dutch Ruppersberger, D-Md., wrote to request funding for state and local governments to support cybersecurity efforts in the next COVID-19 relief package.

The representatives detailed that state and local government employees may be less accustomed to working from home and are less prepared to do so securely and that cyber risks to state and local networks have increased “due to an unprecedented demand for online services.”

“State and local government employees are working hard to ensure continuity of operations,” the representatives wrote. “However, working from home, they are more susceptible to phishing, malware, and ransomware attacks.”

Back in February, the House ordered H.R. 5823 to be reported which will provide $400 million in cybersecurity grants to states annually – emphasizing the importance of funding to improve cybersecurity among state and local governments. The bill has not yet advanced through the House.

“As such, we respectfully request that you consider including cybersecurity assistance grants for State and local governments in the next COVID-19 relief package,” the letter said. “They are critical partners in our response and recovery, and their ability to deliver services unabated is critical to national resiliency.”

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