The Internet has found a new enemy, in form of cyber-security legislation that has wide-ranging privacy implications. As far as the cyber-activists are concerned, the latest bill, CISPA, is worse than SOPA and PIPA.
As a refresher, SOPA, or Stop Online Piracy Act, was introduced in a sub-committee at the House of Representatives last fall. Despite tech giants such as Google and Facebook opposing the anti-piracy bill’s draconian measures which could curb innovation and restrict speech on the Web, it seemed on track to be approved in committee and to reach the House floor for a full vote by January or February. PIPA, or Protect Intellectual Property Act, was the Senate counterpart and had actually been approved by the committee back in May. After an Internet “blackout” on Jan. 18 launched by online encyclopedia Wikipedia, link sharing site Reddit, and hundreds of other sites, the bills’ supporters agreed to withdraw support and revisit the issue.