Major Federal Legislation: A 'Legal Foundations' Study: Report 6 of 12: Report to the President's Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection   [open pdf - 126KB]

"Some of the most sweeping Federal legislation relevant to efforts to protect the critical infrastructures was originally conceived, passed into law and implemented long before the proliferation of computer and computer networks, and before the emergence of serious threats to the infrastructures. While the long-standing divisions of authority created by such legislation and the mechanisms that flourished thereunder still appear to be fundamentally sound, some of this legislation may now require modernization so that it may continue to serve its originally intended purpose. Several pieces of legislation that appear relevant to infrastructure assurance objectives were written before the emergence of a recognizable cyber threat. It is not clear whether such authorities would apply, and should apply, to a cyber-related event. Until the dynamics of such a cyber event are better understood, including the necessary response vehicles, sweeping legislative changes would be premature. However, it is nonetheless possible to identify key issues and to make general recommendations to begin the process of incorporating the full range of infrastructure assurance issues within the legislative framework. It is also possible to identify the additional pieces of legislation relevant to achieving infrastructure assurance objectives and consider whether those acts should be amended or revised, or should act as models to guide the implementation of other specific infrastructure assurance objectives."

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