As my first attempt to post a story here at SEB, here is a story near and dear to my heart… [cross posted at my Asylum]
The bill, sponsored by Rep. Mary Bono (R-CA) provides guidelines for technology companies that distribute software capable of most types of electronic monitoring. It requires that consumers explicitly choose to install such software and agree to the information being collected.
So now you will have to be given the option to install this crap on your computer… a good first step. This version sponsored by Rep. Bono will impose fines on companies who break the law, but another anti-spyware bill will also be coming to a vote shortly which will impose criminal penalties as well. This bill (HR 4661) is sponsored by Rep. Robert Goodlatte (R-VA).
The chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, said Goodlatte’s anti-spyware bill was preferable because of its criminal sanctions, and Barton said he will work to combine both proposals for a final vote by year’s end.
Barton acknowledged that experts had recently found more than 60 varieties of spyware installed on the panel’s own computers. He said all the spyware programs had been installed without the permission of computer users.
-Source: Yahoo! News
Rep. Bono’s bill explicitly permits software from the FBI and other ‘spy agencies’ to be installed on computers without the owner’s consent under a court order or other legal permissions affecting federal departments. (Or in the case of the Patriot Act, the whim of the Attorney General).