In what was by all accounts a feisty event (one attendee told me I missed “fireworks”), a House hearing yesterday saw lawmakers renew their calls for a bill that would set some baseline security requirements for peer-to-peer networks to prevent against people inadvertently exposing files on their computer that weren’t meant to be shared.
Edolphus Towns, the New York Democrat who chairs the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, opened yesterday’s proceeding noting that sensitive information like schematics of the president’s helicopter and financial information from Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer had been discovered on the peer-to-peer network Lime Wire.
Those instances have been well documented, but Towns wasn’t content to base his attack solely on media reports. He said he had his staff poke around on Lime Wire, and said they turned up some appalling things, ranging from the copyright music and movies that one would expect to medical records and tax returns.
And the list went on: social security numbers of military personnel? Terrible. The location of a safe house for the first family? Awful.