|Cyber Crime Funding
|4/26. The Senate
Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce,
Justice, State, and the Judiciary held a hearing on the
Department of Justice FY 2002 budget. See, prepared
testimony of Attorney General John Aschcroft. His
statement addresses increased funding for cyber threats.
"The nation's growing dependency on technology systems
has resulted in a heightened vulnerability of our banking
system, critical transportation networks, and vital government
services, while also significantly increasing the incidence
and complexity of crime. To address the emerging cyber threat,
the FY 2002 budget includes $33 million in increased
resources. Within this amount, $28.14 million will support the
FBI's counter-encryption capabilities, and the development of
cyber technologies for the interception and management of
digital evidence. For the U.S. Attorneys, $2.95 million is
included to support 24 new positions for the prosecution of
crimes committed using the Internet. And, $1.9 million is
included for the Criminal Division for 14 new positions to
continue coordinating the rising number of investigations and
prosecutions of multi-jurisdictional national and
international intrusion; denial of service attacks and virus
cases; and to provide increased network security and
encryption capabilities for its automated
|4/25. Rep. Robert
Andrews (D-NJ) and Rep.
Lindsay Graham (R-SC) introduced HR
1545, a bill to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938
to clarify the exemption from overtime compensation
requirements for some computer professionals. It provides
that an "employee who is a computer systems, network, or
database analyst, designer, developer, programmer, software
engineer ... compensated at a rate of not less than $27.63 an
hour ... shall be considered an employee in a professional
capacity ..." The bill was referred to the House
Education and Workforce Committee.
4/25. Sen. George Allen
(R-VA) and Sen. Conrad
Burns (R-MT) introduced S 777, a bill to permanently
extend the moratorium enacted by the Internet Tax Freedom
Act. The bill was referred to the Senate Commerce
Committee. On April 24, Rep. Chris Cox (R-CA), Rep. Bob
Goodlatte (R-VA), and Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA) introduced HR
1552, a bill to extend the moratorium enacted by the
Internet Tax Freedom Act through 2006.
|4/25. Sen. Charles
Grassley (R-IA), Chairman of the Senate Finance
Committee, gave a speech
[PDF] to the European -
American Business Council in which he discussed a new
round of trade negotiations, the foreign sales corporation tax
regime, fast track trade negotiating authority. He stated that
"the message I want to send today is that I want to work
with Democrats and Republicans to find common ground to move
trade promotion authority this year. It's important. By doing
so, we'll provide additional momentum to launching a new round
of negotiations in Qatar."
Amendment, and Markey
Amendment, 4/26 (HTML, TLJ).
re DOJ funding, 4/26 (HTML, SenApprops).
re trade, new round, and fast track, 4/26 (PDF, Grassley).
1552, a bill to extend the moratorium enacted by the
Internet Tax Freedom Act through 2006, 4/24 (HTML, LibCong).
1545, re exemption from overtime compensation requirements
for some computer professionals, 4/25 (HTML, LibCong).
|Quotes of the Day
|"... the bill will not roll back the
market-opening provisions of the Telecom Act. All the
interconnection, unbundling, resale and co-location
requirements contained in that law remain intact for the
provision of local telephone service by competitors. ... the
bill allows Bell companies to compete in the interLATA data
Rep. John Dingell (D-MI), statement
in support of HR
1542, April 26.
"Page 4, beginning on line 12, strike paragraph (20) and
insert the following: "(20) DEFINITION OF HIGH SPEED DATA
SERVICES.---The term 'high speed data service' includes any
telecommunications service delivering data, represented by a
string of binary bits transmitted digitally as a series of
zeroes and ones, but such data services do not include, under
any circumstances, bits representing voice communications,
even though such voice services are also expressed digitally
as a series of zeros and ones, data services being digital
bits of special importance. Someone, preferably a senior
corporate employee with years of experience in analyzing
zeroes and ones, shall posses authority to determine which
bits are which as they zip through a network literally at
light speed. All decisions of such employee may be challenged
and brought to the attention of government officials, but only
after a wee bit, and only bit by bit." "
Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA), proposed amendment to HR 1542
regarding the distinction between voice and data, April 26.
|4/26. The House
Commerce Committee's Telecom and Internet Subcommittee
1542, with several amendments that do not alter the nature
of the bill, by a roll call vote of 19-14. The bill is titled
"The Internet Freedom and Broadband Deployment Act of
2001". It is sponsored by Rep.
Billy Tauzin (R-LA) and Rep. John Dingell
(D-MI), the Chairman and ranking Democrat of the full
committee, and by many other members. It was also introduced
in the 106th Congress as HR 2420. It would, among other
things, exempt interLATA data from Section
271 requirements. Telecom Subcommittee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI)
stated that the full committee mark up will take place next
The bill was approved after a five hour continuous and
contentious markup session at which 20 amendments were
considered. The subcommittee approved amendments pertaining to
FCC imposed penalties.
The Commerce Committee often operates by consensus, or near
consensus. However, the committee was sharply divided on this
bill. The division was not partisan. Six Republicans and eight
Democrats voted against passage. See, roll
call vote of April 26. Members from the California and the
west, as well as members from districts with technology
companies, tended to oppose the bill. Reps. Tauzin and Dingell
sat through the markup, and led the debate in support of the
bill. They had the votes necessary for passage, and to stop
significant amendments. They argued that by exempting data,
but not voice, traffic from the requirements of Section
271, the Bell companies would be incented to widely deploy
Opponents and critics of the bill lacked the votes to stop it.
So, they used the hearing to demonstrate strong opposition to
the bill, and weaknesses in the bill. Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL),
who represents an inner city district, and Rep. Tom Sawyer
(D-OH), who represents a partly rural Ohio district, offered a
hastily drafted amendment
that would mandate that the phone companies deploy broadband
services in underserved urban and rural districts. Tauzin and
Dingell quickly endorsed the concept of the amendment, but
asked that it be withdraw for further redrafting. The
amendment was withdrawn. Rush and Sawyer then voted for
passage. But, Tauzin and Dingell's endorsement gave opponents
of the bill the argument that if mandates are necessary to
make the Bells deploy broadband, then the rationale for the
bill -- that it will incent the Bells to deploy broadband --
is a sham.
Rep. Chip Pickering
(R-MS) offered an amendment that would require ILECs to
"obtain an outside, independent certification that such
carrier can separate voice traffic from data traffic carried
over its network and that it is capable of blocking interLATA
voice traffic." Rep. Tauzin responded that the bill,
which is based upon creating separate regulatory treatment for
voice and data traffic, would not take effect if this
amendment were adopted. He stated that voice and data cannot
be distinguished, and therefore, if the amendment were
adopted, ILECs would not be able to comply. Pickering
introduced the amendment for the purpose of forcing Rep.
Tauzin to make this admission. Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA)
also threw a jab at the bill's data voice dichotomy by
offering a comic
amendment that would require Bell companies to appoint a
senior employee to watch every digital bit that moves on its
networks, and identify whether it is a voice bit or a data
bit. The Pickering amendment failed 10 to 21, and Chairman
Upton ruled the Markey amendment out of order.
Opponents of the bill also attacked the procedure used to rush
the bill through the committee. Chairman Tauzin gave members a
less than one week notice of the April 25 hearing and April 26
markup. Moreover, most members were out of town for the Easter
recess when the notice was issued. A motion to postpone the
markup for one week was tabled by a vote of 17 to 10. It would
have passed, had not all of the Republican opponents of the
bill voted to table.
Five members fervently opposed the bill throughout the five
hour debate: Markey (D-MA), Davis (R-VA), Pickering (R-MS),
Largent (R-OK), and Wilson (R-NM). Several others also joined
in the debate against the bill, including Eshoo (D-CA), Cox
(R-CA), Harmon (D-CA), and Stupak (D-MI). Tauzin and Dingell
lead the debate in favor of the bill, and were sometimes
joined by Green (D-TX) and Engel (D-NY). Rep. Rick Boucher
(D-VA), who is also Co-Chair of the Internet Caucus, voted
with Tauzin and Dingell throughout, but otherwise sat
|4/26. The FBI's National
Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) issued an advisory
that warns of increased attacks from hackers in the
People's Republic of China. The advisory states
"malicious hackers have escalated web page defacements
over the Internet. This communication is to advise network
administrators of the potential for increased hacker activity
directed at U.S. systems during the period of April 30, 2001
to May 7, 2001. Chinese hackers have publicly discussed
increasing their activity during this period, which coincides
with dates of historic significance in the PRC: May 1 is May
Day; May 4 is Youth Day; and, May 7 is the anniversary of the
accidental bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade."
4/26. Junsheng Wang and Bell Imaging Technology Corp. plead
guilty in U.S. District Court (NDCal) to theft
and copying of the trade secrets of Acuson Corporation. Wang
obtained documents providing the architecture for the Sequoia
ultrasound machine that contained the trade secrets of Acuson
from his wife, who worked for Acuson. Wang was arrested last
August while carrying the trade secret documents at San
Francisco International Airport as he was about to board a
flight for Shanghai, PRC. Wang and Bell Imaging were charged
in a criminal information
[PDF] filed in U.S. District Court on April 19, 2001. Wang was
charged with theft of trade secrets in violation of 18 U.S.C.
§ 1832(a)(1); Bell Imaging was charged with copying of trade
secrets in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1832(a)(2). Charges
against a PRC company are pending. See, release.
4/25. A grand jury of the U.S. District Court (CDCal)
returned an indictment against Steven Hevell charging him with
running an investment scam involving securities in purported
high tech companies. He was arrested on April 26. The
indictment alleges that Hevell solicited and sold securities
in three high technology companies that he controlled --
MicroWest Industries, Advanced Identification Technology, and
Consolidated Imaging Centers Radiology Network. He falsely
asserted that the three companies were engaged in acquiring
and selling computer components and had developed a system to
electronically transmit radiological images and fingerprints.
|4/26. FCC Commissioner Susan Ness stated in a release
that "Although I do not know when the President will
formally nominate or the Senate will confirm these excellent
choices, I believe that an orderly transition is best
accomplished by announcing when my time with the Commission
will end. My departure will be no later than June 1st."
See also, Powell
reaction and Furchtgott-Roth
4/26. Margarita Tapia will be the Press Secretary for
Judiciary Committee. She will replace Jeanne Lopato,
who is now Director of Public Relations for the Energy
Department. See, Sen. Hatch's release.
filed a complaint in U.S. District Court (NDCal)
against Microsoft alleging patent infringement.
InterTrust's recently issued U.S.
Patent No. 6,185,683 discloses systems and techniques for
the secure delivery of electronic documents, execution of
legal documents, and electronic data interchange. InterTrust
alleges that Microsoft's Windows Media Player and other
products implementing rights management functions directly and
contributorily infringe this patent. See, InterTrust
4/26. The Copyright
Office published in the Federal Register a notice
of proposed rulemaking regarding the requirements for the
submission of claims for royalties under the cable statutory
license, 17 U.S.C. 111, and the satellite statutory license,
17 U.S.C. 119. Comments are due by May 21, 2001. See, Federal
Register, April 26, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 81, at Pages 20958 -
4/25. The Business Software
Alliance (BSA) announced that G.L. Homes of Florida Corp.,
a real estate developer based in Coral Springs, Florida, paid
$119,922 to settle claims relating to unlicensed copies of
Autodesk, Microsoft and Symantec software installed on its
computers. See, BSA
|The USTR will hold
a public hearing on further actions against Ukraine for its
denial of adequate protection of intellectual property rights.
On March 12, the USTR designated Ukraine as a "Priority
Foreign Country" under the "Special 301"
program. See, notice
in the Federal Register, April 6, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 67, at
Pages 18346 - 18348 and USTR
release of March 13. See also, notice
of change of location.
Deadline to file comments with the FCC regarding its annual
report to various Congressional committees regarding the
progress being made under the ORBIT
Act in promoting competition in satellite
communications services, and in privatizing INTELSAT and
Inmarsat. See, FCC
8:30 AM. The National Center
for Policy Analysis will host a "privacy
briefing". For more information call Joan Kirby at
202-628-6671. Location: Ballroom, National Press Club, 529 14th
St. NW, 13th Floor, Washington DC.
9:00 - 11:00 AM. The Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory
Committee will host a panel discussion titled
"Intellectual Property in the Digital Age."
Breakfast will be served. RSVP to RSVP@netcaucus.org.
Location: Room SC-5, U.S. Capitol Building.
|About Tech Law Journal
|Tech Law Journal is a free access web site
and e-mail alert that provides news, records, and analysis of
legislation, litigation, and regulation affecting the computer
and Internet industry. This e-mail service is offered free of
charge to anyone who requests it. Just provide TLJ an e-mail
Number of subscribers: 1,433.
Contact: 202-364-8882; E-mail.
P.O. Box 15186, Washington DC, 20003.
Copyright 1998 - 2001 David Carney, dba Tech Law Journal. All