Senator Wants To Set Aside Millions For Small Biz Cybersecurity Training

Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., speaks during an Aug. 6, 2020, Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in Washington. A new bill from Hassan, the Small Business Cybersecurity Act, would set aside millions of dollars in federal grant funding for small business development centers to offer a range of local cybersecurity services. (Photo by Toni Sandys/Pool via Getty Images)

A new Senate bill would send millions of dollars in grant funding to small business centers to train cybersecurity workers and conduct testing and review of business IT environments.

The Small Business Cybersecurity Act, introduced this week by Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., would authorize $20 million in 2023 and every year thereafter to the Small Business Administration, which would in turn use it to award noncompetitive grants to small business development centers across the country in order to fund a range of cybersecurity programs and resources to small businesses, according to a copy of the bill obtained by SC Media.

Those services could include things like cybersecurity trainings for workers, tabletop exercises, reviews of policies, plans or procedures, penetration testing services, or cybersecurity consultant services.

In a statement, Hassan said the bill drew inspiration in part from the programs offered by the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center, which offers free cybersecurity reviews to businesses with 500 or fewer employees, web-based trainings based on National Institute for Standards and Technology’s Cybersecurity Framework and one-on-one consulting with business advisers around cybersecurity risks.  

“I encourage my colleagues to

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