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Facebook: User Info Safe Under Controversial Cyber Legislation Facebook: User Info Safe Under Controversial Cyber Legislation

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Congress

Facebook: User Info Safe Under Controversial Cyber Legislation

April 13, 2012

If controversial cybersecurity legislation is passed, Facebook said Friday, it would not share sensitive user information with government officials.

Facebook has voiced support for the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), which aims to encourage businesses and government agencies to share information about cyberthreats.

But the bill, which has enjoyed bipartisan support, has come under fire from civil liberties groups over concerns it could allow government surveillance. On Friday, the activist group Demand Progress said it had gathered 90,000 signatures for a petition pressing Facebook to drop its support for the bill.

Facebook executive Joel Kaplan issued a statement on Friday affirming the need for businesses to have access to government information, but said the bill's measures would be voluntary and Facebook would not share personal information.

"The concern is that companies will share sensitive personal information with the government in the name of protecting cybersecurity," Kaplan wrote. "Facebook has no intention of doing this and it is unrelated to the things we liked about [CISPA] in the first place -- the additional information it would provide us about specific cyber threats to our systems and users."

He noted that the bill's sponsors are open to changing some legislative language when the bill is considered in the House in coming weeks.

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