WASHINGTON — Citing two Minnesota cases where vital information was improperly accessed through peer-to-peer networks, Sen. Amy Klobuchar has introduced legislation to regulate the installation of those networks and ensure that users can opt out at any time.
Klobuchar’s bill would require a user’s informed consent before peer-to-peer software could be installed, make it illegal to block authorized users from uninstalling or blocking peer-to-peer networks and give the Federal Trade Commission enforcement authority. Her bill was co-sponsored by Republican John Thune of South Dakota.
“As a former prosecutor, I know identity theft and security leaks can be prevented,” Klobuchar said in a statement. “Without the proper safeguards, file-sharing software can expose everything on your computer, whether it’s tax returns and medical records or family photos and home movies. This legislation will help computer users protect their files and prevent them from getting into the wrong hands.”
Just last week, the Internet security firm Norton named Minneapolis among the top ten cities where users are most vulnerable to cyber crime. Last year, Americans lost $560 million due to cyber crime, according to the federal International Crime Complaint Center.