Senate Pushes Forward With CISA As Internet Industry Pulls Its Support

from the what-are-they-thinking? dept

Despite the fact that most of the internet industry has recently come out against the ridiculous faux-cybersecurity bill CISA, the Senate today began the process of moving the bill forward with a debate. The arguments were pretty much what you’d expect. The supporters of the bill, such as Senators Dianne Feinstein and Richard Burr, went on and on about how the bill is “voluntary” and about various online hacks (none of which would have been stopped by CISA — but apparently those details don’t matter). Senator Ron Wyden responded by pointing to all the internet companies coming out against the bill, and saying (accurately) that they’re doing so because they know the public no longer trusts many of those companies, and they don’t want a bill that will almost certainly be used for further surveillance efforts.

Amazingly, Burr shot back with a really dishonest and misleading claim that companies that don’t agree to “share” information with the government are the ones harming their users by somehow not protecting their info. That’s fairly incredible. The reason that companies don’t want to share info is because no one — the companies or the public — trust the government to not abuse the information. To turn that around and pretend that sharing the info with the government is likely to better protect user information is laughable.

The fact that the internet companies have finally come out against CISA is a really big deal. For the past few years, they’ve remained pretty quiet on it and related bills, because it would have granted them immunity from liability for participating in the program. So, for the tech companies, it was tough to argue against the bill, since it just protected them from legal liability. Yet, in the last few weeks, many internet companies and industry associations have (finally) spoken out against the bill, noting that it actually puts their users’ privacy at risk. This also helps highlight how the claim that this is all “voluntary” is a myth, and the companies recognize that they will likely be pressured into sharing information.

Meanwhile, a bunch of amendments have been introduced along with CISA… including an absolutely terrible amendment introduced by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse that would revamp an unrelated bill, the infamous CFAA, which needs to be reformed. Except that the Whitehouse amendment makes the CFAA worse, not better.

There’s still plenty of process to occur, but the ball is now rolling. There will likely be some fights and votes in the next few days, but if you don’t think CISA (or this horrible CFAA amendment) should pass, now would be a good time to call your two Senators and let them know to oppose this.

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Comments on “Senate Pushes Forward With CISA As Internet Industry Pulls Its Support”

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24 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

"the internet industry"? ... "all the internet companies coming out against"? ... "the internet companies"? -- NAME THREE. -- BUT GOOGLE IS NOT AMONG THEM.

Only point of interest this time round is you’re even more vague. Google is lobbying hard for this, exactly tuned to its spying. Google monetizes privacy, not going to stop until none.

“CISA: The Dirty Deal Between Google and the NSA That No One Is Talking About”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/evan-greer/cisa-the-dirty-deal-betwe_1_b_7883722.html

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: "the internet industry"? ... "all the internet companies coming out against"? ... "the internet companies"? -- NAME THREE. -- BUT GOOGLE IS NOT AMONG THEM.

Google is lobbying hard for this, exactly tuned to its spying. Google monetizes privacy, not going to stop until none.

Google came out against CISA, not for it. You are, once again, misinformed.

http://www.itpro.co.uk/security/25452/facebook-google-and-yahoo-oppose-information-sharing-act

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

How informative would it be for the public if the top five related-industry donors were included with every report and their combined life-time spend.

“Sen. Hilary Clinton (Dem.) [3.3M – 1. Citigroup, 2. Goldman Sachs, 4. JP Morgan, 5. Morgan Stanley, 12. Lehman Bros.] tabled an amendment today proposing extensive reform on SEC reporting requirements for financial institutions…”

(not meaning to pick on Clinton specifically, just name recognition)

That One Guy (profile) says:

Yeah, about that...

Amazingly, Burr shot back with a really dishonest and misleading claim that companies that don’t agree to “share” information with the government are the ones harming their users by somehow not protecting their info.

This being the same government that’s been stumbling from one hacking scandal after another? That’s shown that it doesn’t know the first thing about proper security on it’s own systems? Not sharing information with that government is supposed to make things less safe and secure?

First they need to show that they can properly secure the data they already have before they get to whine about how companies need to ‘share’ with them even more data.

Anonymous Coward says:

who exactly is sponsoring this bill? (and others like it)

I find it hard to believe that the “tech experts” in DC (with a few exceptions, Sen. Wyden) would actually draft such a bill? So.. let’s do a little brainstorming here? Who stands to profit off of this type of bill?

NSA – The NSA has ALWAYS been trying to destroy the internet in pursuit of more power than it has been granted.

China – To be fair, China can just walk in to any US database and take what they want (as far as I can tell), They would LOVE a bill like this, because it means US Citizen data is then stored on Govt servers, which has a STELLAR job of security, right?

MPAA/RIAA – What can i say, the internet is an obstacle to their profits, free speech is also a threat to their profits, what better way to kill both than to kill the internet?

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: who exactly is sponsoring this bill? (and others like it)

I find it hard to believe that the “tech experts” in DC (with a few exceptions, Sen. Wyden) would actually draft such a bill? So.. let’s do a little brainstorming here? Who stands to profit off of this type of bill?

Main support is coming from US Chamber of Commerce… and some support from defense industry/contractors. Basically, big old companies want this so they can get immunity for sharing info in the hopes that the gov’t will help “protect” them from online threats, and contractors want this because they want to sell the gov’t “cybersecurity” nonsense.

Anonymous Coward says:

Bernie is the only guy running for POTUS who will do anything about this.

It is worth noting that the Senate may be simply uninformed. This article would suggest that perhaps the Senates view is jailed by its own Praetorian Guard, and they just don’t know it.

I’ll go a step further and say that Gallup, and their ilk are probably being MIM’d as well. It is fairly trivial to redirect a small percentage (say 5%) of phone calls, if you have access to the phone switch on the PSTN side of a polling center. So I’ll believe the polls proffered by the cabal news, when they start publicizing the validation methods used to confirm their data.

2016 is already he most hacked election in history. So if you want a 2020 election, don’t leave anything to doubt. Vote for Bernie.

Anonymous Coward says:

What about Foreign biz?

Personally, I don’t feel like any big company on the web gives a shit about our privacy. Not directly. They care if we sue them for not keeping our data secure. Ethics….pffff. Comcast wants to cut out Neilsan and sell you viewing habits themselves, and of course control the cording cutting numbers ‘presented’ to merica. You’d have to pay them to have ethics.

Perspective: If you were a foreign country, would you do biz w/ ANY of our NSA mainlined corp’s, such as AT&Sleeze? BTW, doesn’t AT&Sleeze have closets w/ no door knobs in their facilities for spook access only? Thought someone actually posted a Youtube vid. Anyway, the fact is that if the US gov doesn’t take a step back and actually look at the effects of their baby-dickery, foreigners won’t do biz w/ us. So all you merican corps…put that in your quarterly projection pipes and smoke it cuz it’s coming.

The younger generation needs to rise up and own this issue or they will most certainly be explaining to their grandkids how they dropped the ball. You guys have seen 1984, right?

J. Hernandez (profile) says:

Sounds like The darkside is taking over or rights, Again!

There is always an issue with our rights because technically we have none. Technically we have rights once they are mentioned and quoted or they do not exist. That’s why knowing your rights is something that can make or break your situation if confronted by the authorities.

Can someone help me find the links to my state of California reps so that we can make something positive happen…Please

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