Washington, D.C. - U.S. Representatives Steve Chabot (R-Cincinnati), Mike Turner (R-Dayton) and Marcia Fudge (D-Cleveland) today applauded the inclusion in the FY2021 National Defense Authorization Act of a bipartisan amendment they offered to help bolster cyber security efforts nationwide. Specifically, the amendment would provide $3 million for the National Center for Hardware and Embedded Systems Security and Trust (CHEST), a cyber security consortium of universities, funded by a combination of National Science Foundation grants and memberships by industry and non-profit institutions. CHEST was established to coordinate university-based research to advance knowledge of security and trust for electronic hardware and embedded systems.
In Ohio, the program is run out of Ohio Cyber Range regional centers at the University of Akron and the University of Cincinnati. The regional center at the University of Akron is a virtual training ground and testing site aimed at enhancing cyber security in Ohio. The range is used by the Ohio National Guard, schools, governments and businesses to train the cyber security workforce, conduct research, test emerging technologies and host cyber security exercises and competitions.
The funds provided by the amendment will help to ensure that CHEST can continue its efforts to establish whole-of-government and whole-of-nation cyber security best practices. Many experts in both the public and private sector warn that the United States is losing ground in critical innovations. Without this amendment, many fear that the U.S. will fail to ensure cyber security hardware and strategic systems are established and coordinated in a manner that provides the training and education needed today and in the future.
“Cyber security is one of the greatest challenges to our national security that we face in the 21st Century,” said Rep. Chabot. “Just last week, we learned about Russian efforts to steal COVID-19 vaccine research from the U.S., the U.K. and Canada, and Twitter suffered a major attack in which a massive number of accounts were compromised, including those of Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Elon Musk and Bill Gates. As a nation, we must coordinate our efforts to protect our vital technological infrastructure against these intrusive hacking operations. This amendment is a major step in the right direction, and will help to develop and disseminate the best tools and practices possible through the work of the National Center for Hardware and Embedded Systems Security and Trust. We are particularly fortunate here in Ohio to have prominent experts in the field at the University of Cincinnati and University of Akron, leading the way to stronger, more resilient cyber security systems.”
“I was proud to cosponsor an amendment to increase Air Force research funding by $3 million for the National Center for Hardware and Embedded Systems Security and Trust (CHEST),” said Rep. Turner. “The Air Force Research Laboratory in my community directly supports CHEST in providing protocols, workforce training, and skills development for cyber security. This amendment coordinates university-based research with the needs of industry and government to create a more robust understanding of hardware and cyber security. Many Ohio organizations are at the forefront of hardware security issues and would directly benefit from this amendment. I am glad to cosponsor this amendment that will increase security in Ohio and throughout our nation.”
“I was proud to join Reps. Chabot and Turner in securing passage of this amendment to the NDAA to provide an additional $3 million to the Center for Hardware and Embedded Systems Security and Trust (CHEST),” said Rep. Fudge. “This funding will not only support critical university-based research being conducted in Ohio at the University of Akron and the University of Cincinnati, but it will ensure the security and resilience of our electronic hardware and embedded systems and strengthen America’s competitive edge in the field of cybersecurity.”