In the wake of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, the White House is calling for $22 billion in new cyber security spending to protect the nation’s vulnerable infrastructure.
In a statement Tuesday, the Biden administration called for $20 billion in grants to harden the nation’s energy systems by strengthening cyber security and the energy grid’s resilience. It also proposed $2 billion in federal grants to support microgrids and grid resilience in areas with a high risk of power outages.
“Specifically, these modernization block grants will be tied to the use of and compliance with 21st century energy, technology, and security standards,” the White House said. “Eligibility for these grants will also be contingent on policies requiring installation of technology that detects and blocks malicious cyber activity on information and operational technology networks, consistent with privacy protections.” The actual amount of cyber security funding that will pass Congress remains up in the air, though. Biden is trying to win bipartisan support for his $2.3 trillion American Jobs Plan to upgrade the nation’s infrastructure, with Republicans calling for a less expensive plan.