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Financial Companies Launch Campaign Backing Cybersecurity Bill

The Financial Services Roundtable (FSR) has launched a D.C. media campaign to urge the Senate to pass the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA), which would allow businesses including cable ISPs whose networks carry much of that info, to share cyber threat information, including shielding them from liability for errors in that sharing. The Senate is expected to take up the bill as early as this week.

FSR is a trade group representing the financial services industry, which includes the banks, insurance companies, asset management, and finance and credit card companies whose information is a prime target of hackers looking to follow the money.

A spokesperson for the roundtable said the campaign would run several weeks, but had no hard end date, and would feature ads on WTOP Washington as well social media and mobile banner ads. The radio ads will run Tuesday through Thursday in morning drive.

There is also a YouTube video backing the bill, but the group is not buying TV time, simply posting and promoting. 

The ads are meant to counter the other side of the issue, privacy groups and some computer companies complaining that the bill will "sweep away" protections and "let companies off the hook" for improper sharing of personal info (the liability protection).

Cable operators, who would get that liability carve-out, support 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.