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CISPA Safeguards! Things you should know and do now

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What is going on?

CISPA, or The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, is a bill that has just passed the House of Representitives and is currently working its way through the Senate. If you don’t remember this bill from last year’s blackout; you’re in luck, because it’s been reintroduced!

In order to raise awareness for this legislation, many subreddits are blacking out and trying to do their part.

Okay, but what does it do and why should I care?

First of all, here is the complete text. Please take the time to actually read it. It is important to be fully informed as there is a lot of misinformation about the purpose of this bill. Relax, it’s not as long as you think it is.

CISPA is a bill focused on Cyber Security. It’s meant to address growing concerns for Cyber threats and give protection to businesses who handle your personal information. The number one threat to your personal information is malicious attackers, and it costs much more to defend from attacks than to initiate them. CISPA puts more tools in businesses’ hands, but it brings into the question of security vs privacy.

So, what exactly is a Cyber Threat?
(A) IN GENERAL- The term ‘cyber threat information’ means information directly pertaining to–

(i) a vulnerability of a system or network of a government or private entity;
(ii) a threat to the integrity, confidentiality, or availability of a system or network of a government or private entity or any information stored on, processed on, or transiting such a system or network;
(iii) efforts to deny access to or degrade, disrupt, or destroy a system or network of a government or private entity; or
(iv) efforts to gain unauthorized access to a system or network of a government or private entity, including to gain such unauthorized access for the purpose of exfiltrating information stored on, processed on, or transiting a system or network of a government or private entity.

(B) EXCLUSION- Such term does not include information pertaining to efforts to gain unauthorized access to a system or network of a government or private entity that solely involve violations of consumer terms of service or consumer licensing agreements and do not otherwise constitute unauthorized access.

Well that’s well and dandy, why should I be concerned?

While CISPA was written to address a legitimate problem, there are concerns about it potential for misuse. It could allow private companies to share your personal information with other companies and the government without informing you of it. The wording that relates to what information can be shared is vague, which raises concerns about what personal information of yours will be shared. The bill has been changed over time to address some of these concerns but most privacy advocates feel that it still has large loopholes that could be abused.

I want to make a difference, what should I do?

Contact your senators! Call them, email them, write them, send smoke signals! Whatever it takes! The more they hear from their constituents the more they’ll see how important the issue is to us. CISPA is very low salience among most people, that’s why it’s so important for us to get the word out the best we can. You do have a voice and it’s time to make it heard.

I want to learn more about protecting my privacy, what can I do?

Have no clue what Cryptography is or why you should care? Checkout the Crypto Party Handbook or the EFF’s Surveillance Self-Defense Project.
Just want some simple tips? Checkout EFF’s Top 12 Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy.

TrueCrypt Tutorial HD

Report – FBI Fails to Crack TrueCrypt Drive


I use both of these and swear by them. TrueCrypt takes all night in some cases to Encrypt your (large full) drive(s) and quickly if empty. I like it because it is highly secure and allows a bootime password long before anything is accessible. Even if the drives are removed, as the FBI did in the above article. They could NOT crack it after 2 years!

TorVPN, depending on spoofed IP… it may make your internet slow down a bit, but worth it if you are concerend of your IP being tracked.

Other good security measures are of course, a decent firewall, Disabling Windows PNP, and disabling all ports that are not in use. has some tried and true applets for doing these things you’d be wise to checkout.

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    Total 2 comments
    • Confederate

      Ture Crypt is not a bad piece of software to have. If you don’t have it, get it while you still can. As for hiding or masking your IP do this as well, but don’t try it on your work computer because your Sys Admin will see what’s happening & it could cost you your job.

    • underdog

      i use ture crypt also what u hear about it not being secure is not ture .

      here is my setup

      true crypt

      comando dragon fire wall

      360 total security

      supper anti spyware program

      i use fire fox as a web browser

      with ad block plus

      do not track me

      spam advert

      if u use ture crypt u delete the file when thay get it back ( and thay will trust me ) thay would only get a file that no one has a clue what it is .

      just because u put the files into the garbage and dump it do not mean it is gone . i tould people that countless times and yet when i prove them wrong the look on there faces is always fun to watch .

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