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Organizations Express Concern Proposed Cyber Export Regulations Could Harm, Not Improve, U.S. Cybersecurity
Date: 7/21/2015
Written By: Jennifer Cummings, The Fratelli Group for NFTC, (202) 822-9491

Washington DC – In a letter to Kevin Wolf, Assistant Secretary for Export Administration in the Department of Commerce's Regulatory Policy Division of the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), the National Foreign Trade Council joined with nine other organizations to comment on the BIS proposed rule, Wassenaar Arrangement 2013 Plenary Agreements Implementation: Intrusion and Surveillance Items, released in the Federal Register on May 20, 2015.

In a letter sent yesterday, the organizations wrote:




"The goals of the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) are constructive, and our organizations appreciate BIS' attention to combating the proliferation of malicious and weaponized software. However, we have genuine concerns that if the proposed rule were to go into effect without substantial changes, it could harm rather than improve U.S. cybersecurity.




"We do not attempt to answer each question in the May 20 notice seeking comment. However, we try to explain why our organizations believe that BIS' proposed rule is too expansive and the license requirements are overly strict. Our associations recommend that BIS narrows the breadth of cyber items that would be controlled and builds more flexibility into the rule's conditions. We believe that the United States can meet the terms of the WA without sacrificing the prudence needed to make the proposal.




"... Our associations are committed to working with BIS officials and other policymakers to strengthen U.S. cybersecurity by advancing smart, effective, and efficient policies at home and globally. We appreciate the opportunity to comment on the bureau's proposed rule. ... We urge the BIS not to rush to finalize this proposed rule, which is unworkable in its current form. The proposed regime would tie the hands of businesses' legitimate cybersecurity activities while malicious actors simply disregard compliance."

Read the full letter, including specific concerns the organizations have with the proposed rule, here.



About the NFTC
Serving America's Global Businesses Since 1914 - The National Foreign Trade Council ( is a leading business organization advocating an open, rules- based global trading system. Founded in 1914 by a broad-based group of American companies, the NFTC now serves hundreds of member companies through its offices in Washington and New York.
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