INGAA's Santa: Interstate gas lines don't need cybersecurity rules

US interstate natural gas pipeline companies already work closely with the US Transportation Security Administration, and new federal cybersecurity regulations could undermine that relationship, the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America warned.

“INGAA supports federal action that could result in enhancing information-sharing opportunities and tools between national security agencies and the owners and operators of critical infrastructure,” INGAA Pres. Donald F. Santa said.

Public-private partnerships can address cyberthreats, he said in an Oct. 15 letter to US Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), chairman of the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee.

Since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, INGAA has worked with federal officials to develop, implement, and update recommendations and best practices to improve critical US gas pipelines’ physical security and cybersecurity.

INGAA members worked extensively with the US Department of Transportation’s Research and Special Programs Administration (now the Pipeline and Hazardous Safety Materials Administration) to develop the initial Pipeline Security Information Circular which was issued in September 2002, Santa said.

Trust developed through a strong private sector partnership with law enforcement and intelligence agencies, as well as with the TSA, is key to effective cybersecurity, Santa said.

“This is not possible when government cybersecurity regulators merely enforce federal regulation with civil penalties,” he told Rockefeller. “The cybersecurity world moves too quickly for such a traditional regulatory model to be beneficial or productive.”

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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