Okay: Now Do You Realize Why CISPA's Granting Of Broad Immunity For Companies Sharing Data With The Feds Is An Issue?
from the just-saying... dept
And yet, people insisted that our worries about the broad liability protections were overblown, noting over and over again that it was "voluntary" and that companies wouldn't just give up their data like that. Yet, as we pointed out, if you give the ability to get this information to the government, the government will find a way to take it. And, from the various revelations, it's clear they were already taking it, and the purpose of CISPA may have been to just to further protect these companies from liability.
In the recent Washington Post profile of NSA boss Keith Alexander, it ends with a detailed description of how Alexander has been pushing for more direct control over internet company networks, which should give you a pretty clear suggestion of how the NSA intended to use CISPA:
At a private meeting with financial industry officials a few years ago, Alexander spoke about the proliferation of computer malware aimed at siphoning data from networks, including those of banks. The meeting was described by a participant who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the discussion was off the record.Now, some may argue that it would be crazy to interpret CISPA liability protections from leading to that sort of situation, but given how the NSA has pushed for incredibly broad interpretations of other laws, how crazy is it really?
His proposed solution: Private companies should give the government access to their networks so it could screen out the harmful software. The NSA chief was offering to serve as an all-knowing virus-protection service, but at the cost, industry officials felt, of an unprecedented intrusion into the financial institutions’ databases.
The group of financial industry officials, sitting around a table at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, were stunned, immediately grasping the privacy implications of what Alexander was politely but urgently suggesting. As a group, they demurred.
Given all of this, one hopes it means that CISPA is officially dead in the water.