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February 13, 2002, 9:00 AM ET, Alert No. 367.
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House Committee Holds Hearing on Cyber Security Enhancement Act
2/12. The House Judiciary Committee's Crime Subcommittee held a hearing on HR 3482, the "Cyber Security Enhancement Act of 2001", sponsored by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX). Members of the subcommittee and witnesses offered support for the bill. The Subcommittee has also scheduled a meeting to mark up the bill on Thursday, February 14, at 1:30 PM.
Rep. Smith stated that "as we increase individuals' physical safety at our airports, borders and even sporting events, we should not forget to strengthen cyber security as well." He continued that HR 3482 "increases penalties to better reflect the seriousness of cyber crime; enhances Federal, state and local law enforcement efforts through better coordination, and assists state and local law enforcement through better grant management, accountability and dissemination of technical advice and information."
The bill contains provisions relating to sentencing guidelines for computer hacking crimes, authority of Internet service providers (ISPs) and others to voluntarily disclosure the content of information to law enforcement authorities, and other topics. The bill further amends several sections of the criminal code that were just recently amended by the USA PATRIOT Act, which is also known as the anti terrorism bill.
Section 101 of the bill would require the U.S. Sentencing Commission to amend the federal sentencing guidelines with respect of violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1030, which pertains to crimes involving intentionally accessing a computer without authorization, or in excess of authorized access. For example, the bill would require the guidelines to include "whether or not the defendant acted with malicious intent to cause harm in committing the offense".
Section 102 of the bill would amend 18 U.S.C. § 2702(b), regarding disclosure of the contents of communications. Currently, the statute provides that "A person or entity may divulge the contents of a communication ... (6) to a law enforcement agency ... (C) if the provider reasonably believes that an emergency involving immediate danger of death or serious physical injury to any person requires disclosure of the information without delay." The bill would allow the disclosure "if the provider, in good faith, believes ..."
Section 104 of the bill would authorize the appropriation of $57,500,000 for the FBI's National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) for fiscal year 2003.
Section 105 of the bill would amend 18 U.S. § 2512, which pertains to the advertising of certain illegal devices. The statute prohibits the advertising of "any electronic, mechanical, or other device, knowing or having reason to know that the design of such device renders it primarily useful for the purpose of the surreptitious interception of wire, oral, or electronic communications." Section 105 of the bill would specifically include advertising on the Internet.
Section 106 of the bill would amend 18 U.S.C. § 1030(c), which pertains to punishment of crimes involving intentionally accessing a computer without authorization or in excess of authorized access. The bill would increase the maximum penalty to life imprisonment for crimes where the "offender knowingly causes or attempts to cause death or serious bodily injury".
Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), the ranking Democrat on the Subcommittee, offered qualified support for the bill. He stated that unlike some previous bills, this bill "contains no such heavy handed law enforcement approaches". However, expressed concern over the "further loosening" of the voluntary disclosure standard from "reasonably believes" to "good faith".
John Malcolm, who is the Deputy Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Computer Crimes and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS), testified in support of the bill. He stated in his prepared testimony the bill "strengthens the deterrent effect of current laws by increasing penalties and closing loopholes. The Department strongly supports these amendments." The CCIPS is a section of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ).
He also stated that there are additional changes to current law that the DOJ would like to see included in the bill. He advocated changing the language in Section 106 to also include anyone who with "reckless disregard" causes or attempts to cause death or serious bodily injury. He gave a hypothetical: "suppose a hacker shuts down a town's phone service. While phone technicians race to restore service, no emergency 9-1-1 calls can go through. It is easy to envision in such a situation that somebody might die or suffer serious injury as a result of this conduct. Although the hacker might not have known that his conduct would cause death or serious bodily injury, such reckless conduct would seem to merit punishment greater than the ten years permitted by the current statute." Malcolm also advocated further changes to the sentencing guidelines.
Clint Smith, of WorldCom and the U.S. Internet Service Providers Association, also testified in support of the bill. He said in his prepared testimony that the "USISPA collectively supports HR 3482 for three reasons: It increases funding for law enforcement, It strengthens penalties for cybercrime, and It reduces potential impediments to ISP cooperation with law enforcement.
However, he suggested changing Section 105. He stated that this section of the bill "leaves it unclear whether the modifications to 18 USC § 2512(c) would make ISPs, portals, third party transactions sites, online directory companies or other Internet advertisers liable when illegal monitoring and wiretapping devices are advertised on their networks or through their services. While we recognize that this may not be the intent of the legislation, USISPA urges this committee to clarify that Section 105 neither requires our members, in any way, to monitor traffic or to screen or filter content nor restricts our members from doing so."
Alan Davidson, of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), was the only witness to offer any criticism of the bill. He stated in his prepared testimony that voluntary disclosure provision of Section 102 of the bill is "overly broad" and "would substantially expand the ability to reveal private communications without any judicial authority or oversight."
Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) stated at this hearing that he introduced a separate bill on February 12 that would establish a uniform standard for criminal liability against ISPs by providing that an ISP cannot be held liable under federal criminal law for the actions of third party users. He suggested that it be added to HR 3482, which is scheduled for subcommittee mark up on February 14. Rep. Smith, the subcommittee Chairman, and sponsor of HR 3482, did not respond or comment.
Susan Koeppen of Microsoft also testified in support of the bill. See, prepared testimony. Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) and Rep. Steve Chabot (R-IN) also participated in the hearing. Rep. Chabot questioned witnesses about the upgrading of private networks to reduce cyber crime.
Senate Committee Holds Hearing on IP Theft Abroad
2/12. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on the theft of American intellectual property. All of the Senators, government officials, and industry representatives who spoke agreed that piracy of intellectual property is a serious problem, and that more needs to be done to deter theft abroad.
Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE), the Chairman of the Committee, presided. He stated that "when an American owns property, the government has a responsibility to protect that property from theft. When that property is an idea, it deserves our protection no less than if it were land, or a personal object." He added that "if we want to protect American innovation, and by extension American jobs, we need to maintain a vigilant stand against intellectual property theft." He also released his own 46 page report titled "Theft of American Intellectual Property: Fighting Crime Abroad and at Home".
Sen. George Allen (R-VA) and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) both offered strong words of criticism for piracy.
The Committee heard testimony from three government witnesses, Alan Larson, Under Secretary of State, Peter Allgeier, Deputy U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), and John Gordon, U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California.
Larson addressed efforts by the State Department to persuade other nations to ratify WIPO treaties, and to pass and enforce anti piracy legislation. He also stated that the U.S. is insisting upon intellectual property protection provisions, with dispute resolution procedures, when it negotiates new bilateral and regional trade agreements. See, prepared testimony.
Allgeier reviewed the Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement, the USTR's use of the Special 301 process, and trade agreements. Gordon testified about efforts by U.S. Attorneys to prosecute intellectual property crimes, and the involvement of foreign gangs in piracy.
The Committee also heard testimony from three industry representatives: Jack Valenti (P/CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America), Hilary Rosen (P/CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America), and Jeff Raikes (Microsoft). See, Rosen testimony [PDF].
FCC Names Info Warrior to Lead Spectrum Task Force
2/12. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) picked Paul Kolodzy to be Senior Spectrum Policy Advisor in the FCC's Office of Engineering and Technology (OET). Kolodzy will also chair a newly created FCC task force addressing issues related to spectrum policy. Kolodzy comes to the FCC from the Advanced Technology Office (ATO) at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) at the Department of Defense (DOD). Before going to work at DARPA, he worked for defense contractor Sanders, which was a Lockheed Martin company, but is now a part of BAE Systems.
Before joining the FCC, Kolodzy was one of 16 program managers at DARPA's ATO. He headed the ATO's neXt Generation Communications (XG) program, which seeks to develop both the system concepts and the enabling technology to dynamically assign spectrum in the battlefield environment. He also managed the ATO's Small Unit Situational Awareness System program, which is developing mobile, ad hoc networking to provide position and navigation in GPS denied areas.
The FCC has spectrum management responsibilities with respect to spectrum bands assigned for commercial use. The NTIA has responsibility for management of spectrum assigned to the DOD.
Kolodzy has experience with developing advanced mobile wireless communications systems. However, unlike current commercial 2G networks or forthcoming 3G systems, these military systems do not involve cellular networks. Saddam Hussein, and other evil telecom regulators, are likely to grant the U.S. military licenses, building permits, and access to rights of way, for constructing a network of base stations and relay towers within their jurisdictions. Hence, the military is developing a radio system for soldiers that uses low power, high bandwidth, self configuring, mobile, peer to peer networks. The system would also incorporate spectrum hopping, in part, to avoid interception, and location identification, for situational awareness.
Kolodzy also has experience with interference, that is, maximizing interference. The Advanced Technology Office's WolfPack program is intended to deprive battlefield competitors of the use of radio communications from 20 MHz through 2.5 GHz through the use of distributed, autonomous, ground level, low power battlefield jammers. The goal of this program is to completely disrupt enemy communications, without affecting U.S. military communications in the same battlespace and spectrum bands.
Kolodzy also worked at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory for 11 years as senior systems analyst. He has a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University. See also, FCC release, DOD biography and picture, Kolodzy speech [PDF] on WolfPack, and DARPA solicitation of proposals [MS Word] regarding WolfPack.
NTIA Director Addresses Broadband and Rights of Way
2/12. NTIA Chief Nancy Victory gave a speech titled "Together on the Right Track: Managing Access to Public Roads and Rights of Way" to the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioner's (NARUC) Committee on Telecommunications in Washington DC. She stated that "we are concerned that constraints on accessing public rights of way might be inhibiting broadband network construction."
She reviewed the content of comments that the NTIA received recently in its broadband proceeding. She stated that "While most of the concerns were voiced about municipality and county activities in this area, federal agencies that own public lands were also identified as posing potential roadblocks to rights of way access. Due to the nature of networks, only a few ``difficult´´ jurisdictions can have a disproportionately adverse effect on the roll out of uninterrupted statewide or regional advanced services networks, which ultimately can impair national broadband coverage. These commenters suggest four impediments that errant rights of way administration can impose on broadband deployment: delay, unreasonable fees, a third tier of regulation, and discriminatory treatment."
However, she also pointed out that "city and municipal interests argue that as trustees of the public's roads and rights of way, their fiduciary duty demands that they recover the fair value of private use of the public's property. Therefore, they contend that local governments should have the flexibility to use market pricing, including revenue based mechanisms, for efficient allocation of rights to use scarce public resources. These commenters maintain that prohibiting localities from charging market rates for rights of way access unfairly subsidizes telecom carriers at the expense of the community." She was speaking to representatives of these local government entities.
Sen. Baucus Addresses Trade Promotion Authority
2/12. Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) gave a speech titled "A New Trade Policy for New Democrats" to the Democratic Leadership Council.
He advocated passage the Senate Finance Committee's version of the trade promotion authority (TPA) bill, which was approved by a vote of 18 to 3 on December 12, 2001. The House passed its version of the bill, HR 3005, on December 6, 2001. TPA, which is also know as fast track, would give the President authority to negotiate trade agreements which the Congress can then approve or reject, but not amend. Sen. Baucus is Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.
Sen. Baucus stated that "We may pass fast track this year, but fast track alone doesn't bring the benefits of expanded trade. Trade agreements do. And if this Administration wants to pass agreements, it needs to build a record of trust -- handling trade in a way that advances the interests of all Americans. They can start with TAA." Trade Adjustment Assistance, or TAA, said Baucus, "is a program for workers who are adversely affected by trade."
He also stated that "fast track is necessary to complete the negotiations in the World Trade Organization. We have started those negotiations without it -- but fast track will be critical when an agreement is reached several years from now."
Baucus stated that "The Senate bill also recognizes the importance of new industries -- where U.S. ingenuity leads the world biotechnology, environmental technology, e-commerce, and services, just to name a few. And we include a negotiating objective to level the playing field in the area of international tax. This is an issue where the Administration should be working hard to find a negotiated solution, and this legislation reaffirms that message."
He also addressed the labor and environment provisions in the bill.
More News
2/11. Sen. Paul Wellstone (D-MN) introduced S 1928, a bill that wuld amend 47 U.S.C. § 222 to require affirmative written consent by a customer to the release of customer proprietary network information. The bill was referred to the Senate Commerce Committee.
2/12. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a notice in the Federal Register stating that it is "considering whether the paper copies of selected subclasses of U.S. patents to be removed from the examiners' search rooms should be disposed of as wastepaper or donated to a non-profit organization." Any interested non-profit organization should contact the USPTO on or before March 14, 2002. See, Federal Register, February 12, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 29, at Pages 6505 - 6506.
2/12. FCC Chairman Michael Powell wrote a letter [PDF] to David Clark, Chairman of the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB), regarding the CSTB report titled "Broadband: Bringing Home the Bits".
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Wednesday, Feb 13
The House will likely begin its consideration of HR 2356, the campaign finance bill.
Day one of a three day conference titled Biometric Consortium Conference. The sponsors include the Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) and the Advanced Technology Program (ATP) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the National Security Agency (NSA), the Department of Defense's Biometric Management Office (BMO), the General Services Administration (GSA), and the Federal Technology Service (FTS) Center for Smart Card Solutions. This conference has been rescheduled from September 12-14, 2001. See, conference web site. Location: Hyatt Regency Crystal City, Arlington, VA.
10:00 AM - 12:00 NOON. The House Science Committee will hold a hearing titled "R&D Budget for Fiscal Year 2003: An Evaluation". The witnesses will be Jack Marburger (Director, Office of Science and Technology Policy), Rita Colwell (Director, National Science Foundation), Samuel Bodman (Deputy Secretary, Department of Commerce), Bruce Carnes (Department of Energy). Location: Room 2318, Rayburn Building.
10:00 AM. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) will hold a press teleconference regarding its Wednesday release of a report [PDF] titled "Your Papers, Please: From the State Drivers License to a National Identification System." To participate, dial 512 225-3050, and then enter access code of 65889 followed by the pound sign (#). For more information, e-mail Alex Macoun at
11:00 AM. The Cato Institute will host a panel discussion titled "Trade War or Tax Reform? The WTO Ruling on Tax Breaks for U.S. Exporters". The panelists will be Rep. Phil Crane (R-IL), Chairman of the Trade Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee, William Reinsch, National Foreign Trade Council, John Meagher, Price Waterhouse Coopers, and Chris Edwards, Cato Institute. Cato will web cast the event. A luncheon will follow the program. See, Cato event summary. Location: Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, NW.
2:00 PM. The Senate Judiciary Committee's Administrative Oversight and the Courts Subcommittee will hold a hearing titled "Administrative Oversight: Are We Ready For A Cyber Terror Attack?". Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) will preside. Location: Room 226, Dirksen Building.
5:00 - 7:00 PM. The Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee will host an event titled "Reception and Technology Fair". Each of the Co-chairs of the Internet Caucus, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT), Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), is likely to speak. The Co-chairs of the Wireless Task Force, Sen. John Ensign (R-NV) and Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA), are likely to speak also. Location: Room 902, Hart Building.
Thursday, Feb 14
The House will likely continue its consideration of HR 2356, the campaign finance bill.
Day two of a three day conference titled Biometric Consortium Conference.  See, conference web site. Location: Hyatt Regency Crystal City, Arlington, VA.
9:30 AM. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will hold a meeting. See, FCC release. Location: FCC, Room TW-C305, 445 12th St., SW.
9:30 AM. The House Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection will hold a hearing titled "Are Current Financial Accounting Standards Protecting Investors?" Location: Room 2212, Rayburn Building.
10:00 AM. The House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Courts, Internet and Intellectual Property will hold a hearing on the "Federal Trademark Dilution Act." Location: Room 2141, Rayburn Building.
1:30 PM. The House House Judiciary Committee's Crime Subcommittee will mark up HR 3482, the "Cyber Security Enhancement Act of 2001", sponsored by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX). Location: Room 2237, Rayburn Building.
12:15 - 2:00 PM. The Forum on Technology and Innovation (Tech Forum) will hold a event relating to cyber security. The speakers will be Richard Clarke (Special Advisor to the President for Cyberspace Security), Vint Cerf (WorldCom), and Bruce Schneier (CTO of Counterpane Internet Security). The Tech Forum was founded by Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN), Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), and the Council on Competitiveness. Location: Room SC-5, U.S. Capitol Building.
2:30 PM. The Senate Judiciary Committee's Technology, Terrorism, and Government Information Subcommittee will hold a hearing on privacy, identity theft, and protection of personal information. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) will preside. The witnesses will be Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH), Richard Stana (GAO), Susan Fisher (Doris Tate Crime Victim's Bureau), Doug Comer (Intel), John Avila (Disney), Frank Torres (Consumers Union). Location: Room 226, Dirksen Building.
Friday, Feb 15
The House will not be in session.
Day three of a three day conference titled Biometric Consortium Conference. See, conference web site. Location: Hyatt Regency Crystal City, Arlington, Virginia.
8:00 AM - 2:00 PM. The National Science Foundation's (NSF's) Advisory Committee for Cyberinfrastructure will hold an open meeting. See, notice in Federal Register, February 4, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 23, at Pages 5136 - 5137. Location: Room 1150, NSF, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA.
9:30 AM. The U.S. Court of Appeals (DCCir) will hear oral argument in New World Radio v. FCC, No. 1110. Judges Henderson, Randolph and Rogers will preside.
12:00 NOON. Deadline to submit comments to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) regarding foreign countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons who rely on intellectual property protection. The USTR requests comments pursuant to its duties under § 182 of the Trade Act of 1974, 19 U.S.C. § 2242, which is better known as the "Special 301" provisions. See, notice in the Federal Register, December 26, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 247, at Pages 66492 - 66493.
Extended deadline to file reply comments with the FCC in its proceeding regarding cross ownership of broadcast stations and newspapers. This is MM Docket No. 01-235. See, notice in Federal Register, January 8, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 5, at Pages 828 - 829.
Monday, Feb 18
Presidents' Day. The FCC will be closed. The House will be in recess on February 18 through 22.
Tuesday, Feb 19
4:00 PM. Deadline to submit grant applications to the Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration for funds for skills training programs. These grants are financed by user fees paid by employers in the H-1B visa program. See, notice in Federal Register, January 10, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 7, at Page 1368. This notice changes a deadline of February 12 contained in a previous notice in the Federal Register, December 14, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 241, at Page 64859 - 64872.
Extended deadline to submit reply comments to the FCC in response to its Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding its cable horizontal and vertical ownership limits. See, original notice [PDF] in Federal Register of October 11, 2001, and extension Order [PDF] of January 29, 2002. The NCTA requested the extension.
Deadline to submit comments to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regarding its proposed settlement with Eli Lilly (which accidentally disclosed the e-mail addresses of 669 subscribers to a Prozac e-mail list). The proposed settlement requires Eli Lilly to establish a security program. See, notice in the Federal Register, February 1, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 22, at Pages 4963 - 4964.
Deadline to submit comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the matter of Ambient's application for a determination that it is an exempt telecommunications company. It is an electric power company that also provides broadband Internet access and related information services over power lines to electrical outlets in residences. See, FCC release [PDF].
FTC Sues Senders of Deceptive Spam
2/12. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it filed seven complaints in various U.S. District Courts alleging deceptive acts or practices in violation of Section 5(a) of the Federal Trade Commission Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a), in connection with the sending of unsolicited commercial e-mail, or spam. The FTC also simultaneously settled the actions. See, FTC release, with hyperlinks to copies of the complaints and stipulated final judgments.