Back in February, I wrote about the crowdsourced effort to change the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act called Fork the Law. Now, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) have introduced legislation in the House and the Senate to make changes to the CFAA.
In an op-ed in Wired, Lofgren and Wyden introduced the bill as “Aaron’s Law,” in honor of Internet activist Aaron Schwartz, who committed suicide last year. Their bill would amend the CFAA to narrow the scope of its enforcement and clarify what constitutes a breach.
The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, codified at 18 USC 1030 et. seq. amended the Counterfeit Access and Abuse Act, essentially criminalizing any intentional, unauthorized access to a protected computer that houses government data or is involved in interstate commerce. The statute can be used to prosecute crimes, and also allows for some civil actions.