Liberal group targets data retention bill


"A U.S. House committee has already approved HR 1981, a broad Internet snooping bill which was introduced last year," states the Demand Progress websites.

"They want to force Internet service providers to keep track of and retain their customers' information -- including your name, address, phone number, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, and temporarily-assigned IP addresses."

At last year's hearing Smith argued the bill would only extend to Internet providers the legal requirements already placed on phone companies. He noted the lack of data on IP addresses often stalls investigations by law enforcement.

“This legislation has not been scheduled for consideration by the House," said Judiciary spokesperson Kim Hicks via email, noting ISPs already retain information but have different standards for doing so. However, the Justice Department has argued ISPs don't retain the data for long enough to aid public safety.

"Child pornography on the Internet may be the fastest growing crime in America – increasing at 150 percent per year. The Internet can be a force for good or bad. But it should not be used to facilitate crimes against our children,” added Hicks.

This post was updated at 2:54 p.m.