Net Neutrality is a hot topic right now, and it’s only getting hotter. The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, is headed to a full vote in the House of Representatives Wednesday or Thursday of this week. This bill, and a few others like it, threaten our freedoms on the World Wide Web. If you don’t yet know about HR.624, you should.
Here’s the deal, CISPA, which touts the title,
To provide for the sharing of certain cyber threat intelligence and cyber threat information between the intelligence community and cybersecurity entities, and for other purposes.
is really just a trap. It gives the US Government way more power than it needs on the World Wide Web. With the FBI and various other organization already screening our emails without cause, we have the right to be alarmed. Now, the most recent draft of the CISPA Bill has a large number of amendments, but Michelle Rachardson commented (and I agree) that:
“The changes to the bill don’t address the major privacy problems we have been raising about CISPA for almost a year and a half,”
The Center for Democracy and Technology’s Greg Nojeim warns “CISPA could shift control of the federal government’s cybersecurity program for the private sector to a secretive military intelligence agency.” This is the main cause of alarm that Americans should be paying attention to. There are plenty of valid concerns in the CISPA Bill. The problem, is that there are freedoms that will be allowed by the bill similar to the Patriot Act, which allowed the government to spy and monitor the citizens of the country.
CISPA would allow private businesses and federal agencies to share cybersecurity information with one another, which is currently not allowed by the law. CISPA first passed the Republican-controlled House in April of last year, but it failed to pass by the Democratic Senate, which was working on some cybersecurity bills of its own. Rogers and Ruppersberger (D-Md.) reintroduced the bill in February of this year, and it is scheduled to be voted on in the next two days.
So here’s the TL;DR for those that didn’t want to read the whole post. CISPA is bad. Even though CISPA really is a bill that infringes upon our rights, it could pass unless we act now (Find a way to contact your rep here). CISPA was designed to, yet again, catch pirates and hackers by allowing the federal government to get any cybersecurity information that other companies (such as our ISPs) want to share. With the all new “Six Strikes” program now in effect, we are slowly losing the freedoms to truly enjoy the services we are paying for while other protect their interests, and manipulate ours.
There is one good spot of news in this gloomy, and somewhat “ranty” post. If CISPA should pass Congress, Obama will oppose it. Hopefully, this threat by President Obama will make Congress open their eyes. Congress should be catering and protecting the American people, not giving them up to businesses for their own gain.
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