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Controversial Privacy Bill Passes US House, Ready for Senate Vote

The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) passed the US House of Representatives by a 248-168 vote. The US Senate will now vote on the measure, perhaps in May. CNET notes that similar legislation has stalled there in the past. President Obama has threatened to veto CISPA if the US Senate approves it. Proponents say the controversial bill will make it simpler for the federal government and private sector to share cyberthreat data. The measure has support from businesses—including Facebook, Microsoft, Oracle, Symantec, and Verizon—that say they want cyberthreat information rapidly disseminated. However, groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Library Association, TechFreedom, and the Republican Liberty Caucus say the measure is overreaching. “The largest sticking point with CISPA has consistently been the contention that its intentions could be used beyond its purpose of protecting the United States from malicious hacking attempts, and in doing so infringe on civil liberties; and that data given to the government by private companies could be improperly handled, resulting in a violation of privacy,” noted the Los Angeles Times. (The Washington Post)(CNET)(The Los Angeles Times)

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