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[] lebenslänglich für Computer-Einbrüche? heute Gesetzes-Hearing in Washington,

Das Gesetz ist von dem Vorsitzenden des "Crime Subcommittee", Lamar
Smith (R-Texas), einem äusserst rechten Abgeordneten, eingebracht
worden. Er scheint allerdings nicht ganz auf dem Laufenden zu sein - in
Abschnitt 104 wird die Einrichtung eines "National Infrastructure
Protection Center" beim FBI gefordert - das gibt es seit 1998!.

Live Audio Feed heute während der Anhörung (22:00 Uhr MEZ):

Text des "Cyber Security Enhancement Act":

~Subcommittee on Crime
4:00 p.m. in 2237 Rayburn House Office Building
Legislative hearing on H.R. 3482, the ?Cyber Security Enhancement Act of
Cybercrime Bill Ups the Ante 
By Declan McCullagh 

2:00 a.m. Feb. 12, 2002 PST 

WASHINGTON -- Some forms of illegal hacking would be punished by life
imprisonment under a proposal that Congress will debate on Tuesday. 

A House Judiciary subcommittee will consider the Cyber Security
Enhancement Act (CSEA), which ups the penalties for computer intrusions,
funds surveillance
research and encourages Internet providers to turn over more information
to police. 

CSEA, sponsored by Crime Subcommittee chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas), is
one of Congress' more recent responses to the Sept. 11 terrorist
attacks. Smith
introduced the bill in December 2001, saying that it will "combat
cybercrime and cyberterrorism and send the signal that if you engage in
cybercrime or
cyberterrorism, you will be punished." 

The hearing begins at 4 p.m. EST. Streaming audio will be available from
the committee's website. 

Smith, whose voting record has received a 7-percent rating from the ACLU
and a 100-percent rating from the Christian Coalition, seems to want to
put the fear of God in anyone contemplating tampering with networked
computers. In cases where miscreants attempt "to cause death or serious
bodily injury" through electronic means, the punishment is life

Even for less serious offenses, CSEA orders the U.S. Sentencing
Commission to rewrite sentencing guidelines for computer hacking
offenses with an eye to making them stiffer than before. (Federal law
already says anyone who "intentionally accesses a computer without
authorization or exceeds authorized access" is a felon facing up to 10
years in Club Fed.) 

CSEA would reorganize the Justice Department's Office of Science and
Technology (OST) and make it more important. Its new purpose would be to
"improve the
safety and effectiveness of law enforcement technology" and its advisory
groups would be immune from federal sunshine laws. 

Among the technology the office would research is "equipment for
particular use in counterterrorism, including devices and technologies
to disable terrorist
devices." According to Smith's aide, terrorist devices "could be
anything from a bomb to a computer." The group is also tasked with
researching better
"investigative and forensic technologies," including electronic
surveillance methods. 

Since 1968, the office has been housed inside the National Institute of
Justice (NIJ), also part of the Justice Department. Brad Bennett, a
spokesman for Smith,
said: "NIJ was created when technology was not the overriding priority.
Today, technology is a priority and the establishment of OST as an
independent office will
ensure that technology is treated as a priority." 


You're being watched: Currently it's illegal for an Internet provider to
"knowingly divulge" what you're doing except in some specific
circumstances, such as
when troubleshooting glitches, receiving a court order or tipping off
police that a crime's in progress. The bill expands that list to include
when "an emergency
involving danger of death or serious physical injury to any person
requires disclosure of the information without delay." 

As an incentive for Internet providers not to be overly zealous in
handing over terabytes of data to the feds, current law allows customers
to sue for damages.
But if CSEA took effect, an Internet provider's "good faith
determination" that something smelled fishy would immunize it from
lawsuits by irate customers. 

Rachel King, legislative counsel for the ACLU, calls that section of the
bill "disturbing." 

"It's our position that information held by a third party is protected
under the Fourth Amendment. It cannot just be divulged without
permission and the
government shouldn't get access to it," King said, unless investigators
obtain a warrant or a grand jury subpoena. 

Technology lobbyists are far more enthusiastic. 

Jason Mahler, general counsel for the Computer and Communications
Industry Association, says of CSEA: "We see it largely as a technical
amendment to existing
cyber-security laws." 

"CCIA supports the bill," Mahler said. "We believe that ISPs should be
protected when they're cooperating with law enforcement investigations."
CCIA's members
include AOL Time Warner, AT&T, Nortel and Oracle. 

Tuesday's hearing is scheduled to include four witnesses: John Malcom
from the Department of Justice, Microsoft's Susan Kelley Koeppen,
Worldcom vice
president Clint Smith and Alan Davidson from the Center for Democracy
and Technology. 

In October, President Bush signed the USA Patriot Act, granting
investigators unprecedented powers that have been applauded by police
groups but condemned
by civil libertarians. 

Robert Zarate contributed to this report.

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