CISPA: The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act Heads For The Hill

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After the huge protests back in January of this year regarding the now shelved SOPA and PIPA bills, US lawmakers have already created another bill, CISPA, that is set to have some very disturbing ramifications for people’s basic rights for privacy. This comes at the same time the UK is proposing to pass a very similar piece of legislation (pretty much exactly the same in terms of what information it can gather) which I wrote about earlier today.

The new bill, H.R. 3523, comes as lawmakers in Washington are trying to find new ways to tackle cyber security issues relating to US interests, and as a result the Rogers-Ruppersberger Cyber Security Bill was created. However, as with SOPA/ PIPA the wording of the bill is very vague to say the least and is very open to abuse by federal entities.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, another online advocacy group, has also sharply condemned CISPA for what it means for the future of the Internet. “It effectively creates a ‘cybersecurity’’ exemption to all existing laws,” explains the EFF, who add in a statement of their own that “There are almost no restrictions on what can be collected and how it can be used, provided a company can claim it was motivated by ‘cybersecurity purposes.’”

The CDT have also expressed concern regarding the wording and implications for the legislation:

However, the bill goes much further, permitting ISPs to funnel private communications and related information back to the government without adequate privacy protections and controls. The bill does not specify which agencies ISPs could disclose customer data to, but the structure and incentives in the bill raise a very real possibility that the National Security Agency or the DoD’s Cybercommand would be the primary recipient.

The bill will come as great news to the NSA who have already built a massive complex in Bluffdale UT which was shrouded in secrecy for a long time. The heavily fortified $2 billion (£1.25 billion) centre should be operational in September 2013. Stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including private emails, mobile phone calls and Google searches, as well as personal data trails — travel itineraries, purchases and other digital “pocket litter”. It is the realisation of the “total information awareness” programme created by the Bush administration — which was killed by Congress in 2003 after an outcry over its potential for invading privacy.

The NSA will be one of the main federal entities that will be granted unfettered access to people’s newly tapped online information. Last month the NSA appeared in front of congress insisting that the NSA has neither the technical nor the legal capabilities to capture and sift through communications from Americans.

Well, that is now changed.

Here is what the Bill involves:

Here is RT America’s report on the bill:

Here is a list of some of the major corporations that have written letters in support for this new legislation. I have embedded Facebook’s letter below the list:

Letters in Support (Strange how most of these were against SOPA/ PIPA?)

Facebook’s letter of support:

Here is a list of the co-sponsors of the proposed bill:

Rep. Mark Amodei [R-NV2]

Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen [R-NJ11] (joined Dec 08, 2011)
Rep. Robert Latta [R-OH5] (joined Dec 08, 2011)
Rep. Patrick McHenry [R-NC10] (joined Dec 08, 2011)
Rep. Ben Quayle [R-AZ3] (joined Dec 08, 2011)
Rep. Kevin Yoder [R-KS3] (joined Dec 08, 2011)
Rep. David “Dave” Camp [R-MI4] (joined Dec 16, 2011)
Rep. Timothy Walberg [R-MI7] (joined Dec 16, 2011)
Rep. Anna Eshoo [D-CA14] (joined Dec 20, 2011)
Rep. Michael Michaud [D-ME2] (joined Dec 20, 2011)
Rep. Mike Coffman [R-CO6] (joined Jan 18, 2012)
Rep. David McKinley [R-WV1] (joined Jan 18, 2012)
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen [R-FL18] (joined Jan 18, 2012)
Rep. John Sullivan [R-OK1] (joined Jan 18, 2012)
Rep. Randy Forbes [R-VA4] (joined Jan 25, 2012)
Rep. Frank Wolf [R-VA10] (joined Jan 25, 2012)
Rep. Darrell Issa [R-CA49] (joined Jan 31, 2012)
Rep. Gary Miller [R-CA42] (joined Jan 31, 2012)
Rep. Tom Cole [R-OK4] (joined Feb 01, 2012)
Rep. Michael Turner [R-OH3] (joined Feb 01, 2012)
Rep. Mo Brooks [R-AL5] (joined Feb 07, 2012)
Rep. John Carter [R-TX31] (joined Feb 07, 2012)
Rep. Vicky Hartzler [R-MO4] (joined Feb 07, 2012)
Rep. Bill Huizenga [R-MI2] (joined Feb 07, 2012)
Rep. Dan Benishek [R-MI1] (joined Feb 13, 2012)
Rep. Paul Broun [R-GA10] (joined Feb 13, 2012)
Rep. Michael Grimm [R-NY13] (joined Feb 13, 2012)
Rep. Brett Guthrie [R-KY2] (joined Feb 13, 2012)
Rep. Candice Miller [R-MI10] (joined Feb 13, 2012)
Rep. Geoff Davis [R-KY4] (joined Feb 14, 2012)
Rep. Doc Hastings [R-WA4] (joined Feb 14, 2012)
Rep. Leonard Lance [R-NJ7] (joined Feb 14, 2012)
Rep. Patrick Meehan [R-PA7] (joined Feb 14, 2012)
Rep. Spencer Bachus [R-AL6] (joined Feb 16, 2012)
Rep. Mary Bono Mack [R-CA45] (joined Feb 16, 2012)
Rep. John Kline [R-MN2] (joined Feb 16, 2012)
Rep. Pete Olson [R-TX22] (joined Feb 16, 2012)
Rep. Aaron Schock [R-IL18] (joined Feb 16, 2012)
Rep. Joe Baca [D-CA43] (joined Feb 27, 2012)
Rep. Chuck Fleischmann [R-TN3] (joined Feb 27, 2012)
Rep. Phil Roe [R-TN1] (joined Feb 27, 2012)
Rep. Leonard Boswell [D-IA3] (joined Feb 28, 2012)
Rep. Kristi Noem [R-SD0] (joined Feb 28, 2012)
Rep. Rob Wittman [R-VA1] (joined Mar 01, 2012)
Rep. Marsha Blackburn [R-TN7] (joined Mar 05, 2012)
Rep. Alcee Hastings [D-FL23] (joined Mar 05, 2012)
Rep. Randy Hultgren [R-IL14] (joined Mar 05, 2012)
Rep. Robert Hurt [R-VA5] (joined Mar 05, 2012)
Rep. Rick Crawford [R-AR1] (joined Mar 08, 2012)
Rep. Bill Johnson [R-OH6] (joined Mar 08, 2012)
Rep. Adrian Smith [R-NE3] (joined Mar 08, 2012)
Del. Madeleine Bordallo [D-GU0] (joined Mar 19, 2012)
Rep. Trent Franks [R-AZ2] (joined Mar 19, 2012)
Rep. Rick Larsen [D-WA2] (joined Mar 19, 2012)
Rep. Albio Sires [D-NJ13] (joined Mar 19, 2012)
Rep. Jim Cooper [D-TN5] (joined Mar 22, 2012)
Rep. Joseph Pitts [R-PA16] (joined Mar 22, 2012)
Rep. Mike Ross [D-AR4] (joined Mar 22, 2012)
Rep. Jon Runyan [R-NJ3] (joined Mar 22, 2012)
Rep. Roscoe Bartlett [R-MD6] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Brian Bilbray [R-CA50] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Dennis Cardoza [D-CA18] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Jim Costa [D-CA20] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Morgan Griffith [R-VA9] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Larry Kissell [D-NC8] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Mike McIntyre [D-NC7] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. William Owens [D-NY23] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Collin Peterson [D-MN7] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Steve Scalise [R-LA1] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Heath Shuler [D-NC11] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Steve Stivers [R-OH15] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
Rep. Rob Woodall [R-GA7] (joined Mar 29, 2012)
A New York Times article written on April 3rd by ex-Special Advisor to President George W. Bush on cybersecurity, Richard Clarke, said that he would like the DHS to inspect all net traffic that flows in and out of the US.

Sources: TechDirt, RT, Wiredars technica

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