CISPA has just lost a powerful backer, with Microsoft withdrawing its support for the controversial cyber security bill saying any law must allow them “to honor privacy promises” they make to their customers.
Microsoft’s change of heart regarding the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) follows the United States House of Representatives decision to pass the bill by an overwhelming margin of 248 to 168 on Thursday.
Responding to queries from CNET on Friday, Microsoft said any law must allow “us to honor the privacy and security promises we make to our customers.”
The tech giant further added it hopes to “ensure the final legislation helps to tackle the real threat of cybercrime while protecting consumer privacy.”
The company had previously lauded the bill as an important “first step towards addressing significant problems in cyber security” when it was first proposed last November.
Microsoft’s new position on CISPA mirrors that of US President Barrack Obama, who threatened to veto the bill. The White House seeks measures that would require companies to minimize the quantity of personally identifiable information before sharing it with the government and each other. The Obama administration also fears “HR3523 (CISPA) effectively treats domestic cyber security as an intelligence roll” by virtually deputizing the National Security Agency to handle such matters.
As SOPA and PIPA were halted in their tracks in January by a ground swell of public opposition, CISPA had already sailed through the House Intelligence Committee the previous month with a vote of 17-1.
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