What you need to know about a controversial cybersecurity bill expected to pass Senate in coming days
NEW YORK — A bill that would let the government hack and seize private data and seize businesses’ servers without a warrant has passed the Senate and is expected to soon make it to President Donald Trump’s desk.
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Tuesday to approve the Cybersecurity Act of 2017, which was authored by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Sen.-elect Tammy Baldwin (D) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D).
The legislation has been approved by the House and Senate Judiciary Committees and now heads to Trump’s White House for signature.
Wyden and Baldwin said the legislation was important because it was intended to strengthen the nation’s cyber defenses, but critics say it was rushed through Congress without adequate oversight.
Warnings of a potential cyberattack have been growing in recent weeks, and there were signs that lawmakers were concerned about cybersecurity on Monday when they passed a cybersecurity bill in the House.
The bill requires cybersecurity agencies to notify Congress every three months of any threat to national security, and would give the president the power to impose fines or seize private assets.
The bills would give lawmakers broad powers to investigate any breach of cybersecurity, including the sharing of data and information with foreign governments, companies or individuals.