Politics

In Cybersecurity Industry, Calls For Veto Of Georgia Hacking Bill

Some argue Georgia Senate Bill 315 would hinder ethical researchers from searching for security vulnerabilities. A group has signed a letter asking Gov. Nathan Deal to veto the bill.
Some argue Georgia Senate Bill 315 would hinder ethical researchers from searching for security vulnerabilities. A group has signed a letter asking Gov. Nathan Deal to veto the bill.
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A group of cybersecurity specialists, computer scientists, business owners, academics and students are calling on Gov. Nathan Deal to veto a bill that would make “unauthorized computer access” a crime.

Frank Rietta is the founder of Rietta Inc., a cybersecurity company in Alpharetta. He’s one of 55 people who signed a letter to Deal opposing the legislation, Senate Bill 315.

It would outlaw ethical researchers who act on their own from searching out security vulnerabilities online, Rietta said.

“SB 315 makes a huge section of that work illegal, so that it doesn’t get done in Georgia. That harms us along with everyone else,” he said.

Rietta said he uses information from researchers that would be affected by the bill to help his own clients.

Attorney General Chris Carr advocated for the bill as it moved through the state Legislature. He still supports it.

“Senate Bill 315 strikes the proper balance between protecting Georgians from online criminals and not stifling the incredible cybersecurity and infosec infrastructure we have developed in our state,” Carr said in an emailed statement.

Deal’s office didn’t respond to requests for comment. He has until May 8 to act on bills that passed the Legislature this year.