Printed from http://www.electronista.com

'Aaron's Law' introduced to reform the US Computer Fraud and Abuse Act

updated 09:48 pm EDT, Thu June 20, 2013

Activist Aaron Swartz prosecuted under old version of law

Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) have introduced "Aaron's Law," legislation to reform the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and hopefully prevent incidents such as that suffered by computer programmer and political activist Aaron Swartz, who faced up to 35 years in prison for allegedly violating the CFAA. "Aaron's Law" is intended to clarify and limit what is considered a crime under the CFAA.

Currently, the CFAA makes it a crime to "exceed authorized access" to a protected computer. Under "Aaron's Law," this term would change to "access without authorization" and will be defined as "bypassing technological or physical measures via deception." Virus authors, malicious code creators, and denial of service attack initiators would continue to be prosecutable.

In Swartz's case, the federal government alleged that Swartz illegally downloaded academic articles from JSTOR on MIT's campus by using a computer program to automate the downloading process. Critics have accused the Department of Justice for prosecuting him for the equivalent of "checking too many books out of the library." JSTOR declined to participate in Aaron's prosecution, but under pressure of a federal court case and potential prison time, Swartz took his own life in January 2013.


Aarons Law



By Electronista Staff
Post tools:

TAGS :

toggle

Comments

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.

toggle

Network Headlines

toggle

Most Popular

Sponsor

Recent Reviews

Crucial MX100 256GB SATA-3 SSD

While the price to gigabyte ratio for magnetic platter-based hard drives can't be beat, the speed that a SSD brings to the table for a ...

Narrative Clip

With the advent of social media technology, people have been searching for new ways to share the events of their daily lives -- be it ...

Blue's Mikey Digital

Blue Microphones, a company that makes some of the most popular digital USB microphones among podcasters and musicians, has for some t ...

Sponsor

toggle

Most Commented

 
toggle

Popular News