State and local government efforts to fight cybercrime could be getting a big boost in the form of a $1 billion grant program from the U.S. federal government. The funding is part of a $1 trillion infrastructure bill proposed on Capitol Hill and would be administered over four years by the Cybersecurity and Information Security Agency (CISA).
It follows other federal efforts to aid state and local cybersecurity initiatives. In February, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced $1.87 billion in preparedness grants, some of which can be used for cybersecurity.
To help public safety agencies, as well as state and local governments, secure government funding for cybersecurity initiatives, Motorola Solutions has launched a grant assistance program. The GovGrants program, a partnership between Motorola Solutions and Lexipol, includes services and resources for technology, IT and local government projects to improve cybersecurity resilience and aid in responding to and recovering from cyber attacks.
Experts from Lexipol will guide applicants throughout the process, from grant research to grant application reviews, and as well as the process of submitting a successful grant application. In addition, the program offers services to review current projects and provide grant alert notices when funding becomes available that aligns with one of an organization’s current or future initiatives.
Public safety agencies, as well as state and local governments around the country, are dealing with an increased number of attacks in the past several years. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has only made matters worse, with many organizations and agencies suddenly forced to adopt remote work policies in the past year and a half, increasing the cyber attack surface.
The additional cybersecurity grant funding in the proposed infrastructure bill comes at a time when the risk to public safety agencies is increasing. Ransomware is expected to hit organizations every 11 seconds by the end of 2021, with Public Safety Access Points (PSAPs) and Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) systems continuing to be popular targets for cyber attackers.
Most agencies know that cybersecurity is critical to protect their organizations and the public but are held back by the need for rapid innovation, which is stretching IT and security teams thin, as well as limited resources to adopt new technology and services. The new Motorola Solutions grant assistance program is designed to help organizations navigate the complexity of finding and securing funding to address these challenges.