Civil Liberties Not Impacted by Obama’s Cybersecurity Executive Order, ACLU Says

On the other hand, the organization still opposes CISPA

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has analyzed the executive order on cybersecurity released on Tuesday by the United States President Barack Obama.

The new executive order, which focuses on protecting US critical infrastructure against cyberattacks by improving cooperation between the private sector and the government, seeks to protect digital privacy, ACLU has found.

“The president’s executive order rightly focuses on cybersecurity solutions that don’t negatively impact civil liberties. For example, greasing the wheels of information sharing from the government to the private sector is a privacy-neutral way to distribute critical cyber information,” explained ACLU Legislative Counsel Michelle Richardson.

“More encouragingly, the adoption of Fair Information Practice Principles for internal information sharing demonstrates a commitment to tried-and-true privacy practices – like consent, transparency, minimization and use limitations,” she added.

“If new information sharing authorities are granted—especially the overbroad ones being pondered by the House—these principles will be more important than ever. We look forward to working with the administration to make sure that the devil isn’t in the details when privacy regulations are drafted.”

However, the organization is not so pleased with the reintroduction of the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA).

Richardson argues that CISPA allows companies to share the personal information of US Internet users with government bodies. However, the bill doesn’t require organizations to make reasonable efforts when it comes to protecting their customers’ privacy.

On the other hand, it does allow the government to use the data without any minimization procedures for “undefined” national security purposes.

“The Senate bill and the executive order make significant progress in the privacy arena and it is discouraging that the House persists in taking the low road,” she said.

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