by Krypton Radio Staff Writer Jennifer Sawyer

April 29, 2012 – The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011 also known as H.R. 3253 have gained a lot of controversy over the last year and no doubt with good cause. Under section 1104 and subsection (7) the bill is quoted as saying,

“(7) PROTECTION OF INDIVIDUAL INFORMATION- The Federal Government may, consistent with the need to protect Federal systems and critical information infrastructure from cyber security threats and to mitigate such threats, undertake reasonable efforts to limit the impact on privacy and civil liberties of the sharing of cyber threat information with the Federal Government pursuant to this subsection.  The most recent Amendment to the act passed the House of Representatives on April 26, 2012.

Internet LawThe final tally of votes was 206 Republicans in favor, and 28 opposed. Of the Democrats, 42 were in favor of and 140 were opposed. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and author of CISPA, is quoted as saying, “Stand for America! Support this bill!” and claims the bill would not endanger the privacy of America in any way.  The bill would allow for the ease of sharing information between the U.S government and technology and telecommunications companies such as Intel, Microsoft, and AT&T for the prevention of cyber-attacks to Americans on American soil; so why the great debate? Many people feel that the bill would give the government free reign and authority over the personal information of its citizens. Is the government really looking to be nosey about who we have coffee with or is it an attempt to protect citizens from the scrupulous actions of terrorists and hackers?

The bigger question may in fact be can we as Americans afford not to have an added layer of security over internet privacy? The CISPA act does not say that it will grant authorities the power to use our own personal information against us but rather in the event that terroristic or harmful information present itself it can and will be channeled to the proper security authorities for further investigation without the red tape, legal hassle of previous privacy laws. As Americans we can either choose to chalk it up to another business practice designed to further the strength of America over the information highway or we can choose to continue to chronically complain about someone else’s views in an effort to make ourselves feel better.

Whichever side of the fence you are on, rest assured the internet is here to stay. It is fast and it is changing and above all it is grey. It is through such bills as CISPA that the once blurred facets of the internet can emerge into a black and white path.

You can view the text of the bill in its entirety at thomas.loc.gov.

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