$1 Trillion Spending Bill Includes Cybersecurity Act

Dec. 21, 2015

$1 Trillion Spending Bill Includes Cybersecurity Act On Friday, President Obama signed a $1.1 trillion spending bill that included the Cybersecurity Act of 2015. The bill, which grew out of a White House proposal made nearly a year ago , is receiving praise from retailer and payments groups—members of which have been battered by waves of seemingly never-ending security breaches. Despite opposition from some corners of both industries on privacy grounds, major associations representing the payments world and retailers have rallied behind the bill, especially provisions that protect companies that share data with the U.S. government to thwart hackers.

“Retailers are grateful to House leadership for making cybersecurity legislation a top priority and including it in a year-end package,” said Nicholas Ahrens, vice president of privacy and cybersecurity for the Retail Industry Leaders Association. “Cyber-attacks will increasingly be the tool of choice for criminal syndicates, rogue states and terrorist organizations bent on disrupting and damaging America’s economy. Giving businesses the tools and legal protections needed to share cyber-threat indicators is the first step in what must be a national commitment to protecting American businesses and consumers.”

While all businesses fear data breaches, e-commerce retailers are especially attuned to them because when it comes time for cyber thieves to monetize the stolen information, online merchants are, increasingly, primary targets. E-commerce and m-commerce transaction growth that remains in double digits each year, EMV migration in the U.S. and thousands of data breaches annually have combined to make cyber security a priority for merchants that accept card-not-present payments and the companies that support them.