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This article was published on April 15, 2013

    As CISPA’s re-passage looms in the House, the EFF launches a tool to help you reach your elected officials

    As CISPA’s re-passage looms in the House, the EFF launches a tool to help you reach your elected officials
    Alex Wilhelm
    Story by

    Alex Wilhelm

    Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected] Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected]

    Quick one here, friends: CISPA made it out of committee last week, and is widely expected to be voted on this week in the lower chamber of the United States Congress. Naturally, if you wanted to make yourself heard, this is the time to do so.

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation has released a simple tool to help you send a note to your relevant congressional representatives. I’ve tested the app, and can confirm that it won’t take you more than a minute to use.

    What’s CISPA and the hubbub all about? The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act is a proposed bill that deals with the issue of cybersecurity. While the country as a whole does need enhanced cyber protection, privacy advocates, large technology firms, and recently the White House have spoken out against CISPA.

    The bill provides legal cover for the sharing of private digital information of individual citizens with government groups such as the National Security Agency. Attempts to amend the bill to close privacy gaps have largely failed.

    That specific failure led to a stern rebuke by a number of House Democrats:

    While the Committee did adopt meaningful improvements that are helpful, we are disappointed that the Committee rejected a proposed amendment that would have required private sector entities to make “reasonable efforts” to remove Personally Identifiable Information (PII) unrelated to the cybersecurity threat [in question].

    It’s going to be a big week when it comes to digital privacy and cybersecurity. If those are issues you care about, I’d start making noise.

    Top Image Credit: ttarasiuk