Cyber-security bill raises new privacy concerns
Updated: Apr 20, 2012 4:00 AM MDT
"CDT’s main concerns with CISPA [The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, Nov. 2011] are that it has an almost unlimited description of the information that can be shared with the government; it allows for a large flow of private communications directly to the NSA [National Security Agency], an agency with little accountability; and it lacks meaningful use restrictions," CDT Senior Counsel Greg Nojeim said.
The CDT wants to make sure that information passed on to the government is used specifically to ensure cyber-security and not "unrelated national security purposes or criminal investigations," Nojeim said.
"The language of this bill is dangerously vague, so that personal online activity – from the mundane to the intimate – could be implicated," said Rainey Reitman, activism director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
In January, a number of well known websites, including Wikipedia and Reddit, blacked out their pages in protest.
In December 2011, Rogers and Ruppersberger added an amendment to the bill which would prohibit the government from using cyber threat information unless "at least one significant purpose is cyber-security or national security."
A second amendment would require an annual report to Congress on the information shared with the government in the interest of making what data is collected more transparent.
The House will vote on CISPA on April 23.