Senate Intel Committee approves CISA cybersecurity bill that could broaden NSA powers

New cybersecurity legislation cleared the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday during a closed session. Critics fear it may broaden the NSA’s already formidable access to Americans’ data.
Written by Senate Intelligence Chair Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), CISA – or Cybersecurity Information Protection Act – is widely seen as a redux of last year’s CISPA bill, which was widely protested by online privacy watchdogs and ultimately defeated in Congress.
A draft of the bill circulated in June granted permission by government agencies to retain and share data for “a cybersecurity purpose,” which was defined as “the purpose of protecting an information system or information that is stored on, processed by or transiting an information system from a cybersecurity threat or security vulnerability.” According to the Guardian, that language would likely lead the NSA to stockpile weaknesses in digital security.
The legislation, which was approved by the committee by a vote of 12 to 3, would allow private firms to share information regarding cyber-attacks “in real time.” It would also shield those firms from lawsuits by individual