Summary Box: Bigger US role against cyberthreat?

THE PROPOSAL: A Senate plan in development would bolster the government’s ability to regulate the computer security of companies that run critical industries.

CRITICISMS: Some businesses say it goes too far, while some security experts believe it should have even more teeth.

THE BACKDROP: The proposal is meant to ensure that computer systems running power plants and other essential parts of the country’s infrastructure are protected from hackers, terrorists or other criminals. Authorities are increasingly worried that cybercriminals are trying to take over systems that control the inner workings of water, electrical, nuclear or other power plants.