White House Threatens To Veto CISPA If Privacy Is Not Protected
from the now-carry-through dept
While it had hinted at a veto threat earlier, the White House has now put out a statement on CISPA that, if privacy protections are not added to the bill, it will likely veto the bill. I know some cynical folks will note the possibility of an out, and the chance that he’ll sign the bill anyway, but hopefully the meaningful threat of a veto will convince Congress to think twice about passing a bad bill that wipes out privacy protections.
Both government and private companies need cyber threat information to allow them to identify, prevent, and respond to malicious activity that can disrupt networks and could potentially damage critical infrastructure. The Administration believes that carefully updating laws to facilitate cybersecurity information sharing is one of several legislative changes essential to protect individuals’ privacy and improve the Nation’s cybersecurity. While there is bipartisan consensus on the need for such legislation, it should adhere to the following priorities: (1) carefully safeguard privacy and civil liberties; (2) preserve the long-standing, respective roles and missions of civilian and intelligence agencies; and (3) provide for appropriate sharing with targeted liability protections.
The Administration recognizes and appreciates that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) adopted several amendments to H.R. 624 in an effort to incorporate the Administration’s important substantive concerns. However, the Administration still seeks additional improvements and if the bill, as currently crafted, were presented to the President, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto the bill. The Administration seeks to build upon the continuing dialogue with the HPSCI and stands ready to work with members of Congress to incorporate our core priorities to produce cybersecurity information sharing legislation that addresses these critical issues.
There are some good amendments proposed, which would help protect privacy, but it’s unclear how likely they are to pass.
Furthermore, it’s still quite troubling that no one seems willing to explain why this is needed, and what existing laws are somehow getting in the way of important information being shared. We keep asking that question, and it seems odd that no one replies other than “but… but… but… cyberattacks from China!!”