Friday, April 28, 2006

Congress May Consider Mandatory ISP Snooping

I implore any readers to set up Tor nodes now, if you can.

Declan McCullagh writes in C|Net News:

Last week, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, a Republican, gave a speech saying that data retention by Internet service providers is an "issue that must be addressed." Child pornography investigations have been "hampered" because data may be routinely deleted, Gonzales warned.

Now, in a demonstration of bipartisan unity, a Democratic member of the Congressional Internet Caucus is preparing to introduce an amendment--perhaps during a U.S. House of Representatives floor vote next week--that would make such data deletion illegal.

Colorado Rep. Diana DeGette's proposal says that any Internet service that "enables users to access content" must permanently retain records that would permit police to identify each user. The records could not be discarded until at least one year after the user's account was closed.

It's not clear whether that requirement would be limited only to e-mail providers and Internet providers such as DSL (digital subscriber line) or cable modems. An expansive reading of DeGette's measure would require every Web site to retain those records. (Details would be left to the Federal Communications Commission.)

More here.


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