CISA Passes; Tech Industry Groans
The Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act was passed by the Senate in a 74-21 vote yesterday, despite pleas from the tech industry, including Twitter, Google and Amazon, to change certain measures they say allow government to spy on citizens. The House passed a similar version earlier this year, which means a combined version will become law, reports Wired magazine. CISA’s intent is to combat the various security breaches that have targeted big well-known organizations from Target to the Office of Personnel Management. The bill allows companies to share cybersecurity threat data with the DHS, which can pass it along to the FBI and NSA.
One of the loudest opponents was Fight for the Future, a grassroots advocacy group with over 1.4 million members focused on protecting the Internet as a platform for freedom of expression and social change. The group vowed to continue the fight and urged President Obama to veto the bill. However, not all the tech industry was on the same page. CenturyLink, a DC-based global communications, hosting, cloud and IT services firm, applauded passage of CISA, saying that it improves cyber cooperation, requires sharing of critical cyber threat indicators, and extends privacy and liability protections to commercial providers and their customers. (Facebook was also accused of secretly supporting CISA.)