Category Archives: CISPA

If you trust Obama to veto CISPA or similar legislation you’re in for a rude awakening

It has become incredibly frustrating to deal with people who erroneously believe that Obama and his administration will live up to a single claim, promise, or statement. Especially since neither Obama nor his pals have given us a single reason to trust them while giving us tons of reasons not to, not the least of which being the fact that they claim they can kill you or me whenever they please, based on policies which they repeatedly have refused to justify in a court of law.

Back when the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 was being pushed through the House and Senate and making its way towards Obama’s desk I attempted to make it clear that the Obama administration’s supposed intention to veto the bill was nothing more than theater.

Of course, he ended up signing the bill with a meaningless signing statement claiming that he “signed this bill despite having serious reservations with certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of suspected terrorists.”

Read more: http://endthelie.com/2012/05/05/if-you-trust-obama

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Business Insider: CISPA “is absolutely ludicrous insanity. The minds behind this in Congress should be forced to resign, immediately — they are acting in the interests of weird lobbying groups and defense contractors.”

Total surveillance of the people is what Congress ultimately wants, so it is no surprise that this is apparently a top legislative priority for them — even at a time when 1 out of every 2 recent college graduates face unemployment. Even at a time when our total public debt is above $15 trillion.

How bad is CISPA in its current form? Here’s some analysis from Techdirt: “Up until this afternoon, the final vote on CISPA was supposed to be tomorrow. Then, abruptly, it was moved up today—and the House voted in favor of its passage with a vote of 248-168. But that’s not even the worst part. [...] Previously, CISPA allowed the government to use information for ‘cybersecurity’ or ‘national security’ purposes. Those purposes have not been limited or removed. Instead, three more valid uses have been added: investigation and prosecution of cybersecurity crime, protection of individuals, and protection of children. Cybersecurity crime is defined as any crime involving network disruption or hacking, plus any violation of the CFAA.”

Let me put this into perspective for you:

- If the government suspects you are a genuine “bad guy,” like a cyberterrorist, human trafficker, drug kingpin, etc… they can already seize all of this online activity information about you. It’s called obtaining a warrant. CISPA does away with that. It supercedes ALL existing federal privacy laws. As Techdirt’s Leigh Beadon put it, “Basically it says the 4th Amendment does not apply online, at all. Moreover, the government could do whatever it wants with the data as long as it can claim that someone was in danger of bodily harm, or that children were somehow threatened—again, notwithstanding absolutely any other law that would normally limit the government’s power.”

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/cispa-is-ridiculously

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Insanity: CISPA Just Got Way Worse, And Then Passed On Rushed Vote

Up until this afternoon, the final vote on CISPA was supposed to be tomorrow. Then, abruptly, it was moved up today—and the House voted in favor of its passage with a vote of 248-168. But that’s not even the worst part.

The vote followed the debate on amendments, several of which were passed. Among them was an absolutely terrible change (pdf and embedded below—scroll to amendment #6) to the definition of what the government can do with shared information, put forth by Rep. Quayle. Astonishingly, it was described as limiting the government’s power, even though it in fact expands it by adding more items to the list of acceptable purposes for which shared information can be used. Even more astonishingly, it passed with a near-unanimous vote. The CISPA that was just approved by the House is much worse than the CISPA being discussed as recently as this morning.

Previously, CISPA allowed the government to use information for “cybersecurity” or “national security” purposes. Those purposes have not been limited or removed. Instead, three more valid uses have been added: investigation and prosecution of cybersecurity crime, protection of individuals, and protection of children. Cybersecurity crime is defined as any crime involving network disruption or hacking, plus any violation of the CFAA.

Basically this means CISPA can no longer be called a cybersecurity bill at all. The government would be able to search information it collects under CISPA for the purposes of investigating American citizens with complete immunity from all privacy protections as long as they can claim someone committed a “cybersecurity crime”. Basically it says the 4th Amendment does not apply online, at all. Moreover, the government could do whatever it wants with the data as long as it can claim that someone was in danger of bodily harm, or that children were somehow threatened—again, notwithstanding absolutely any other law that would normally limit the government’s power.

Read more: http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120426

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US House Passes CISPA!! 248 to 168

The US House of Representatives has just passed the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA (HR 3523) by a vote of 248 to 168. The bill passed mostly along party lines, backed by House Republicans. While the bill is intended to safeguard the US against “cyber threats,” critics say that it is too vague and broad, and would give government and military intelligence agencies the ability to inspect private data without the use of warrants. While the bill hasn’t garnered the same level of outrage as SOPA did in recent months from companies like Google or Facebook (Facebook supports CISPA), web advocates have been vocal in their opposition to the bill.

The Obama administration has already strongly opposed CISPA and threatened to veto it, so it’s not likely that this particular version of the bill will pass. The White House says that the bill lacks civilian oversight and privacy protections, and that “without clear legal protections and independent oversight, information sharing legislation will undermine the public’s trust in the government as well as in the internet by undermining fundamental privacy, confidentiality, civil liberties, and consumer protections.” Still, the White House has signaled that it is interested in some form of cyber security bill, so this won’t likely be its final act.

Occupy Wall Street has been told that Obama plans to veto this bill if it goes before him, so that’s good.  But who are these 248 representatives passing this bill? The people have already spoken on this bill.  The only thing I can think of is that they are obligated to because their lobbyists and Hollywood has financially been treating them too well.  I can’t wait for things to change in the future when people wise up and get these scum, who can be bought, out of office.

Read more: http://www.theverge.com/2012/4/26/2978395/us-house

CISPA Action List here:
http://www.reddit.com/r/evolutionReddit/comments/sjay6/cispa_action_list_we_need_to_hit_up_congress/

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The pieces fit: CISPA would make the NSA’s new multibillion dollar internet spy facility completely legal

President Barack Obama has announced fresh sanctions against Iran, Syria and those who help them use technology to perpetrate human rights abuses.

The executive order creates sanctions against the government of Syria and Iran “and those who abet them, for using technologies to monitor, target and track its citizens for violence”.

“These technologies should be in place to empower citizens, not to repress them,” said Mr Obama.

And yet we have CISPA.

What about the citizens of the US? Will we be taking sanctions against the companies and organizations that track and monitor us? Against those that provide the tools and technologies to do so?

More to the point: Will the US government sanction itself?

The open internet group EFF has warned that CISPA’s broad wording could class many routine internet activities, such as using encryption on emails or enabling anonymity using a service called TOR, as potential threats.

“Any existing legal protections of user privacy will be usurped by CISPA,” the EFF claims. “The bill clearly states that the information may be shared ‘notwithstanding any other provision of law.’”

Occupy Wall Street says no to CISPA!

Read more: http://www.isights.org/2012/04/obama-wants-sanctions

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What is CISPA and why it’s worse than SOPA

CISPA could allow any private company to share vast amounts of sensitive, private data about its customers with the government.

CISPA would override all other federal and state privacy laws, and allow a private company to share nearly anything—from the contents of private emails and Internet browsing history to medical, educational and financial records—as long as it “directly pertains to” a “cyber threat,” which is broadly defined.

CISPA does not require that data shared with the government be stripped of unnecessary personally-identifiable information. A private company may choose to anonymize the data it shares with the government. However, there is no requirement that it does so—even when personally-identifiable information is unnecessary for cybersecurity measures. For example, emails could be shared with the full names of their authors and recipients. A company could decide to leave the names of its customers in the data it shares with the government merely because it does not want to incur the expense of deleting them. This is contrary to the recommendations of the House Republican Cybersecurity Task Force and other bills to authorize information sharing, which require companies to make a reasonable effort to minimize the sharing of personally-identifiable information.

CISPA would allow the government to use collected private information for reasons other than cybersecurity. The government could use any information it receives for “any lawful purpose” besides “regulatory purposes,” so long as the same use can also be justified by cybersecurity or the protection of national security. This would provide no meaningful limit—a government official could easily create a connection to “national security” to justify nearly any type of investigation.

CISPA would give Internet Service Providers free rein to monitor the private communications and activities of users on their networks. ISPs would have wide latitude to do anything that can be construed as part of a “cybersecurity system,” regardless of any other privacy or telecommunications law.

CISPA would empower the military and the National Security Agency (NSA) to collect information about domestic Internet users. Other information sharing bills would direct private information from domestic sources to civilian agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security. CISPA contains no such limitation. Instead, the Department of Defense and the NSA could solicit and receive information directly from American companies, about users and systems inside the United States.

CISPA places too much faith in private companies, to safeguard their most sensitive customer data from government intrusion. While information sharing would be voluntary under CISPA, the government has a variety of ways to pressure private companies to share large volumes of customer information. With complete legal immunity, private companies have few clear incentives to resist such pressure. There is also no requirement that companies ever tell their customers what they have shared with the government, either before or after the fact. As informed consumers, Americans expect technology companies to have clear privacy policies, telling us exactly how and when the company will use and share our personal data, so that we can make informed choices about which companies have earned our trust and deserve our business.

Occupy Wall Street: Sign the petition to stop CISPA!
http://www.avaaz.org/en/stop_cispa/?tta

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STOP CISPA: Save the Internet

Right now, the US Congress is sneaking in a new law that gives them big brother spy powers over the entire web — and they’re hoping the world won’t notice. We helped stop their Net attack last time, let’s do it again.

Over 100 Members of Congress are backing a bill (CISPA) that would give private companies and the US government the right to spy on any of us at any time for as long as they want without a warrant. This is the third time the US Congress has tried to attack our Internet freedom. But we helped beat SOPA, and PIPA — and now we can beat this new Big Brother law.

Our global outcry has played a leading role in protecting the Internet from governments eager to monitor and control what we do online. Let’s stand together once again — and beat this law for good. Sign the petition then forward to everyone who uses the Internet!

Occupy Wall Street says, sign the petition!
https://secure.avaaz.org/en/stop_cispa/

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SOPA mutates into much worse CISPA, the latest threat to internet free speech

Just because SOPA and PIPA, the infamous internet “kill switch” bills, are largely dead does not mean the threat to internet free speech has become any less serious. TheCyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act(CISPA), also known as H.R. 3523, is the latest mutation of these internet censorship and spying bills to hit the U.S. Congress — and unless the American people speak up now to stop it, CISPA could lead to far worse repercussions for online free speech than SOPA or PIPA ever would have.

CNET, the popular technology news website that was among many others who spoke up against SOPA and PIPA earlier in the year, including Occupy Wall Street, is also one of many now sounding the alarm about CISPA, which was authored by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.). Though the bill’s promoters are marketing it as being nothing like SOPA or PIPA, CISPA is exactly like those bills, except worse.

What CISPA will do, if passed, is remove all the legal barriers that currently stop internet service providers, government agencies, and others from arbitrarily spying on internet users. In the name of “cybersecurity,” a term that is undefined in the bill, CISPA will essentially allow internet users to be surveilled by the government without probable cause or a search warrant, which is a clear violation of users’ constitutional civil liberties.

Additionally, it will allow websites like Google, Facebook, and Twitter to intercept emails, text messages, and other private information that might be considered a threat to “cybersecurity.” The government can then demand access to this information, even if it has nothing to do with copyright infringement, which is one of the excuses being used for why such a bill is needed in the first place.

Read more: http://www.project.nsearch.com/profiles/blogs/sopa

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