At a glance.
- EU proposes regulation for cryptocurrency sector.
- NIST announces small business initiatives.
- US lawmakers pursue increased cybersecurity collaboration with Taiwan.
EU proposes regulation for cryptocurrency sector.
Yesterday the European Parliament voted in favor of a set of measures focused on regulating the crypto trading industry. As the Telegraph notes, experts have dubbed the crypto sector the “wild west” for its lack of regulation or government oversight, and these rules would aim to rectify that. A main goal is to ensure that crypto assets can be traced in order to combating money laundering and other crypto-supported crimes. As well, crypto providers will be required to disclose how much energy they consume, a response to criticism about the extremely high levels of energy required to fuel crypto networks. In addition to ensuring that crypto companies be licensed by a national regulator, lawmakers hope the measures will give the bloc an edge over other nations where the sector is still relatively unmonitored. German MEP Stefan Berger stated, “This regulation brings a competitive advantage for the EU. The European crypto-asset industry has regulatory clarity that does not exist in countries like the US."
NIST announces small business initiatives.
Last month the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) launched the Small Business Community of Interest (COI) initiative, a program focused on helping small businesses exchange resources and ideas with the agency. The NIST Small Business Cybersecurity Act directed the agency to “disseminate clear and concise resources to help small business concerns identify, assess, manage, and reduce their cybersecurity risks,” and in 2019 NIST established a website called the Small Business Cybersecurity Corner to help support these efforts. The COI has already attracted one thousand small businesses, and in the coming months NIST plans to begin hosting regular meetings. NIST explains, “By forming a COI dedicated specifically to small businesses, we hope to help create a more engaging way for smaller companies to communicate their cybersecurity needs, share challenges, and discuss pressing issues.” As well, NIST’s National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence will be hosting two events during National Small Business Week in April and May, and another virtual event will be hosted in June.
US lawmakers pursue increased cybersecurity collaboration with Taiwan.
Members of the US Senate and House yesterday introduced the Taiwan Cybersecurity Resiliency Act, legislation aimed at helping America and Taiwan join forces in combating cyberattacks from China. The bipartisan bill would require the US Department of Defense to expand collaboration with Taiwan in order to leverage US cybersecurity technologies to defend the Taiwanese cyber frontier. Senator Mike Rounds, a Republican out of South Dakota and one of the four co-sponsors of the bill, stated, “Strengthening Taiwan’s military cyber capabilities is one of multiple measures needed to build Taiwan into a well-armed porcupine.” As the Hill notes, in 2019 alone Taiwan faced 20 to 40 million cyberattacks a month from Chinese threat actors, and some of these attacks were subsequently used to target the US. The proposed legislation couldn’t be more timely, as earlier this month China responded to Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-Wen’s California meetings with US lawmakers by ordering military drills over Taiwan. As well, in order to penalize the US for hosting Ing-Wen, China issued sanctions against the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Washington think tank the Hudson Institute. Democrat Senator Jacky Rosen, another of the legislation’s supporters, stated, “We must push back on the Chinese Communist Party’s growing aggression, and its attempts to undermine democracy around the world — including through hostile cyber actions.”