Today, a group of prominent professionals, scientists, and engineers published an open letter to the U.S. Congress, stating their opposition to CISPA, the SECURE IT Act, and other overly broad cybersecurity bills.
We take security very seriously, but we fervently believe that strong computer and network security does not require Internet users to sacrifice their privacy and civil liberties.
The bills currently under consideration, including Rep. Rogers’ Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011 (H.R. 3523) and Sen. McCain’s SECURE IT Act (S. 2151), … nullify current legal protections against wiretapping and similar civil liberties violations …. By encouraging the transfer of users’ private communications to US Federal agencies, and lacking good public accountability or transparency, these “cybersecurity” bills unnecessarily trade our civil liberties for the promise of improved network security. As experts in the field, we reject this false trade-off and urge you to oppose any cybersecurity initiative that does not explicitly include appropriate methods to ensure the protection of users’ civil liberties.