The friction between privacy advocates and law enforcement authorities’ need for access to data to investigate Internet crimes was on full display at a House subcommittee hearing this morning.
Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle seemed sympathetic to the appeal from a top Justice Department official for more reliable access to the records of Internet service providers when investigating child pornography or other online criminal activity.
To Jim Sensenbrenner, the chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime Terrorism and Homeland Security, the question is whether ISPs will take it upon themselves to develop a self-imposed data retention standard, or whether Congress needs to step in.
Then again, efforts to enact data-retention rules in previous sessions of Congress have stalled, owing in large part to the privacy concerns that accompany such proposals.
Datamation reports on the fresh interest lawmakers are showing in a federal data-retention mandate for ISPs.