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USENIX: Proposed Legislation Significantly Affecting Computer Profession

Oct 08, 2001, 14:30 (8 Talkback[s])

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"The USENIX Board of Directors has decided to alert our membership that bills pending before the U.S. Congress or in committee appear to have a detrimental impact on computer professionals.

We are most concerned about aspects of two proposed bills, the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) and the Security Systems Standards and Certification Act (SSSCA), and how they interact with existing legislation such as the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The ATA redefines virtually all computer crime as terrorism, enlarges the maximum penalty to life in prison without parole, allows broad pre-conviction seizures, and, furthermore, does this retroactively, removing the existing statute of limitations. The SSSCA essentially mandates copyright protection in all digital consumer devices and makes disabling or avoidance of copyright mechanisms a felony offense.

More information about these and related issues can be found at http://www.usenix.org/whatsnew/legislation.html."

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