ACLU on Technology
American Civil Liberties Union
Access to broadband services for lower income families
The ACLU, a co-chair of the Leadership Conference Media Task Force, joined this letter to the FCC Chairman in response to his decisions to revoke the Lifeline Broadband Provider designations for nine providers. The ACLU has long supported expansion of
the Lifeline program, which provides access to phone and broadband services for lower income families. The letter opposes Chairman Pai's new efforts to scale back implementation, and urges the FCC to resume the designation process immediately.
Letter to FCC chairman from 15 Senators: We write to express how deeply troubled we are that one of your first actions as FCC Chairman has been to undermine the Lifeline program and make it more difficult for low-income people to access
affordable broadband. Lifeline is a critical tool for closing the digital divide. By statute, the FCC has an obligation to ensure "consumers in all regions of the country, including low-income consumers" have access to "advanced telecommunications."
Source: ACLU 2017 voting recommendation on Lifeline Broadband
, Feb 10, 2017
Voted NO on protecting cyber security by sharing data with government.
- CISPA conducts federal cybersecurity activities to provide shared situational awareness enabling integrated operational actions to protect, prevent, and recover from cyber incidents.
Proponent's Argument for voting Yes:
Opponent's Argument for voting No:
- Rep. SINEMA: We need a 21st century solution for this 21st century problem. This bill ensures that research and development, intellectual property, and software code is no longer being stolen by China, Iran, and Russia.
- Rep. MAFFEI: We've already seen state actors like the People's Republic of China pursue widespread data theft from American computer networks. This is a clear and present danger.
Reference: Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act;
; vote number 13-HV117
on Apr 18, 2013
- Rep. McNERNEY: I'm concerned with the civil protections not required in H.R. 624. Businesses should be required to remove personally identifiable information before submitting data to Federal agencies.
- CNet.com: Rep. Ron Paul warned that
CISPA represents the "latest assault on Internet freedom"; that "CISPA is Big Brother writ large." CISPA would permit, but not require, Internet companies to hand over confidential customer records to federal agencies. What sparked the privacy worries--including opposition from the ACLU and the Republican Liberty Caucus--is the section of CISPA that says "notwithstanding any other provision of law." By including the word "notwithstanding," CISPA's drafters intended to make their legislation trump all existing laws. It would render irrelevant wiretap laws, Web companies' privacy policies, and more.
- Rep. LOFGREN: CISPA could allow any private company to share vast amounts of sensitive, private data about its customers with the government. CISPA would override all other privacy laws, and allow a private company to share nearly anything--from the contents of private emails to medical records--as long as it "directly pertains to" a broadly defined "cyber threat."
Page last updated: Apr 29, 2021