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Facebook: We Have Not Advocated For CISA

One critic of the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) over the weekend said that Facebook was lobbying behind the scenes in support of the bill, which other computer companies and privacy activists say is not acceptable in its present form. A Facebook spokesperson dismissed the allegation.

That talk nonetheless has turned to action, with Fight For the Future, one of the bill's most vocal critics, called Facebook out on a website revealingly titled

"We have not advocated publicly or privately for CISA," a Facebook spokesperson said. But it is not actively oposing it, either. "We are not taking a position on the bill," the spokesperson added.  Facebook already operates its own threat exchange program with 130 other companies, according to someone familiar with the company's policy.

CISA would give companies what its backers say is limited liability from lawsuits for inadvertent sharing or personal information with the government. CISA is meant to make it easier for those companies to share cyber threat information with the government and vice versa, but it is voluntary, so liability is one of the incentives for companies to participate.

Fight for the Future called it providing "impunity for violating their users’ privacy — as long as they hand over user data to the government," and accused Facebook of seeking out that protection via quietly lobbying for the bill.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.