Carte blanche for hackers

If a bill recently introduced by U.S. Rep. Howard Berman passes, hackers will be able to find plenty of gainful and glamorous employment in the movie and music industries. That’s because the California Democrat’s bill would give copyright holders legal immunity for hacking peer-to-peer file-trading networks that infringe on their copyrights. It’s akin to saying that since entertainment companies have been wronged, they should now be free to put together a posse and exact a little technological revenge.

Understandably, the bill is a little unsettling to people who run corporate IT departments, even those who operate legitimate, secure corporate networks. Why? Berman’s bill is so broad that it could lead to a rash of hacking activity.

Read more: my column for Business 2.0 this week explores the business impact of the Berman bill [1].

And if you have time for just one link this issue, skip my column and go straight to the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s “Action Center,” where you can send letters to your congressional rep and your senators, stating your position on the Berman bill [2]. There’s still time to act, and the EFF site makes it easy to do so.

[1] Carte blanche for hackers (Business 2.0, 2002-08-08)

[2] EFF Action Center

Carte blanche for hackers