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Canada wants companies to report cyberattacks, hacking incidents



(Reuters) – Canadian companies operating in critical infrastructure sectors would need to report cyberattacks to the federal government and would need to strengthen their cyber systems under a new law introduced on Tuesday.

The legislation identifies the financial, telecommunications, energy and transport sectors as crucial for national and public security, but ends by naming some companies.

“Much thought was given to identifying which sectors are crucial for national security and public safety,” Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino told reporters, adding that critical infrastructure operators would be identified after consulting the sectors.

The new legislation would also give the Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau̵

7;s government broader powers to secure the country’s telecommunications system against cyber security threats.

“This new legislation … will help both the public and private sectors to better protect themselves against cyberattacks,” Mendicino said.

Faster networks such as 5G have helped Canada’s critical infrastructure sectors become more interconnected and integrated, but they are also more vulnerable to newer forms of cyber threats, the government said.

Hacking incidents are increasing, but they remain underreported because companies under current law are not required to detect cyberattacks when they occur, a senior official said.

Bill C-26, which has not yet been debated or approved, would also prevent telecom companies from using products and services from high-risk providers, according to a government statement.

The statement did not mention any companies, but Canada last month banned the use of 5G equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. and ZTE Corp. to protect national security, and joined the United States, Britain, Australia and New Zealand, which have already banned the equipment.


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