US House of Representatives Passed the Cyber Information Sharing and Protection Act

Apr 20, 2013 09:44 IST

The US House of Representatives passed the Cyber Information Sharing and Protection Act, also called CISPA on 18 April 2013. The aim of CISPA is to fight with the cyber threats, by enabling the law enforcers to get access to the web data.

The CISPA was passed by 288-127 vote out of which 92 were the Democrats. It will now move to the Senate and then to Obama’s desk. The bill will enable the private entities to share the personal information of the customers with any government body, which also includes National Security Agency.

It is important to note that this was the second time that the US House of Representatives passed the CISPA. Senators had earlier rejected the first draft of this bill on the grounds that it wasn’t providing enough for protecting the privacy.

The American federal agencies had warned that hackers motivated by the money or acting as the part of foreign governments were causing a major threat to China.

In the meanwhile, CISPA is also supported by the technology firms such as TechNet computer industry lobby group and CTIA wireless industry group. The ones that oppose the bill are Reddit and Facebook. The CISPA could fail once again in the Senate in case veto power of Obama is used. The White House actually wants certain amendments in the bill so that just a little amount of data is handed in the investigations.

Background of CISPA

• The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) is basically a proposed law in US, according to which the Internet traffic information can be shared between certain technology and manufacturing companies as well as the US government. The purpose of this bill is to enable US Government in investigating the cyber threats as well as making sure about the security of networks against the cyber stacks.
• CISPA was first introduced in the Senate on 30 November 2011 by the U.S. Representative Michael Rogers along with 111 co-sponsors. It was passed by the US House of Representatives on 26 April 2012 but the US Senate did not pass this bill.
• The advisers of Obama advised him to use his veto power against the bill on the grounds that it lacked confidentiality as well as civil liberties safeguards.
• CISPA was then re-introduced in the House in February 2013. It was passed again by the US House of Representatives on 18 April 2013.

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