US Sen. Dianne Feinstein filed legislation Tuesday to require Internet companies that are aware of undefined “terrorist activity” to report it to law-enforcement. US Senator Ron Wyden released the following statement.
Let’s make sure the record is clear: The Director of the FBI testified a few months ago that social media companies are ‘pretty good about telling us what they see.’ Social media companies must continue to do everything they can to quickly remove terrorist content and report it to law enforcement.
I’m opposed to this proposal because I believe it will undermine that collaboration and lead to less reporting of terrorist activity, not more. It would create a perverse incentive for companies to avoid looking for terrorist content on their own networks, because if they saw something and failed to report it they would be breaking the law, but if they stuck their heads in the sand and avoided looking for terrorist content they would be absolved of responsibility.
I’m for smart security policies. If law enforcement agencies decide that terrorist content is not being identified quickly enough, then the solution should be to give those agencies more resources and personnel so they know where to look for terrorist content online and who to watch, and can ensure terrorist activity is quickly reported and acted upon.
Ron Wyden is a US Democrat Senator from the State of Oregon