Why I voted Yes on H.R. 3523
I voted Yes on H.R. 3523, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act.
This bill represents an important step toward addressing our nation's cyber security vulnerabilities by removing barriers that inhibit the sharing of certain cyber threat information. Every day our businesses, including many in New York, are targeted by foreign governments like China through cyber attacks, exposing us to the risk of losing intellectual property and sensitive information and putting our entire infrastructure at risk. These attacks cause real damage and destroy American jobs.
This bill proposes limited, targeted and sensible policies to protect our networks in this digital age. It encourages companies to anonymize and minimize the information that they voluntarily choose to share pertaining to specific cyber threats. It is aimed specifically at enhancing the security of our networks from direct and very explicit attacks.
The form of the bill introduced earlier this week was flawed and I could not support it as it was unveiled. However, I voted to support several key amendments that were adopted in this final measure.
For example, information such as library records and firearms sales that have no relation to national security are explicitly prohibited from being shared with the government. Another amendment I voted for ensures that information is only used by the government if it directly relates to cyber security, the protection of individuals from death or physical injury, the prosecution of child pornography or the protection of the national security of the United States.
In addition, all the provisions of this bill will now expire within five years because of another amendment I supported. In the fast-moving world of information technology, a "sunset" provision is essential to making sure we keep our laws consistent with the advancements of the industry and the threats of tomorrow. It also will force Congress to reassess the value of the legislation and address any needed changes that become evident moving forward.
There is no doubt that our nation's cyber infrastructure faces real and serious threats from foreign attacks and criminals. That's why I continue to fully support the work that takes place at Rome Labs to combat these threats. I also support civil liberties and strong privacy protections for all Americans, which is why I have opposed certain provisions of the Patriot Act.
I supported the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act because it was improved through amendment and now strikes a balance of preventing cyber threats without unduly jeopardizing our citizens' privacy.
The bill was approved by a vote of 248 – 168.