Washington Markup

Ice Cream: Very, Very Good. Cybersecurity Bill: Not So Much

By Michelle Richardson, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 7:44pm

Today, the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs committee held a hearing on S. 2105, the Cybersecurity Act of 2012, sponsored by Sens. Lieberman, Collins, Rockefeller and Feinstein. Introduced earlier this week, this bill delivers the comprehensive reform that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and the Senate Democrats have been promising since last summer. We will blog a more thorough analysis tomorrow, but short story is that the bill is a mixed bag for civil liberties. The good news is that the bill does not include a kill switch; the bad is that it permits companies to share American internet use data with military agencies like the NSA. So color us shocked that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said on the hearing record that the ACLU thinks the bill is "very, very good." Chocolate ice cream is very, very good. The complex, 205-page, ground-breaking rewrite of existing law — well, needs a few changes to really protect privacy. Check back soon for more information.

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