Anti-Hacking Law Reform Thwarted

Re-write makes it more draconian than when it was applied to Aaron Swartz


For years, criminal defense attorneys, academics, and civil libertarians have warned that an anti-hacking law, originally designed to protect NORAD's computers, needs to be reformed. Federal prosecutors have used the law to prosecute the late Aaron Swartz and a Missouri woman accused of lying on her MySpace profile.

Now a key U.S. House of Representatives committee finally is rewriting the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. But instead of fixing the law's vagueness problems, or reducing its penalties, draft legislation backed by the Justice Department would make it even more Draconian.