The 3 Most Absurdly Outdated Internet Laws
The last time Congress passed a sweeping electronic privacy law, the Berlin Wall was standing, Reagan was cracking down on drugs, and cassette tapes—playing Men at Work and Duran Duran—were all the rage. More than 25 years later, there are more than a few ’80s-era laws on the books governing the use of technology that didn’t even exist when the legislation was written. As Americans place an increasing amount of personal data in social networks, cellphones, and email accounts, privacy advocates say that it’s irresponsible not to update these laws to reflect changing technology. Here’s a sampling of some of the nation’s most outdated tech laws:
The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act
This anti-hacking law was birthed in 1984 by a bunch of lawmakers freaked out over the movie WarGames—a clip was shown during congressional testimony—in which a teenaged hacker played by Matthew Broderick accidentally brings the United States and the Soviet Union to the brink of nuclear war.