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Government Surveillance

House Passes CISPA

Washington — Today, the House of Representatives passed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). Although the bill was improved before final passage, it remains fundamentally flawed. CDT reaffirms it opposition to the bill.

CISPA permits companies, notwithstanding any law, to share with the government cyber threat information that is derived from users’ Internet communications without companies first taking reasonable steps to remove personally identifiable information that is not necessary to describe the threat,” said Greg Nojeim, Director of CDT’s Project on Freedom, Security & Technology. “This threatens privacy and is unnecessary for cybersecurity. The bill also invites companies to engage in reckless and negligent cybersecurity conduct that could injure others, and insulates that conduct against criminal and civil liability.”

“That said, we were heartened that the House joined the White House and the authors of last year’s leading cybersecurity bill in the Senate, in supporting civilian control of the government’s cybersecurity program for the private sector,” said Nojeim. “While more work needs to be done to ensure that DHS has the lead, the House took a significant step in that direction today.”

In the coming days, CDT will provide further analysis of CISPA and the amendments that were adopted before passage. CDT’s advocacy will next turn to the Senate.