Cybersecurity Partnership<@VM>No New Internet Taxes<@VM>Tax Credit Push

A group of 19 high-tech companies have formed a new Information Technology Information Sharing and Analysis Center (IT-ISAC) to cooperate on cybersecurity issues.

The objective of the IT-ISAC is to enhance the availability, confidentiality and integrity of networked information systems, the Information Technology Association of America, Arlington, Va. reported Jan. 16. The center was founded in response to recent increases in the number and nature of cyberattacks on networked information systems, ITAA said.

The IT-ISAC is a not-for-profit corporation that will allow the IT industry to report and exchange information concerning electronic incidents, threats, attacks, vulnerabilities, solutions and countermeasures, best security practices and other protective measures.

The organization is a voluntary, industry-led initiative that will respond to broad-based security threats and reduce the impact of major incidents. Membership is open to all U.S.-based IT companies. It will offer a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week network, notifying members of threats and vulnerabilities.Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Christopher Cox, R-Calif., introduced Feb. 7 new legislation to extend the Internet Tax Freedom Act, permanently banning Internet access taxes and directing the states to simplify their complex sales and use tax rules.

Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., told reporters Feb. 6 that he plans to hold hearings on the Internet tax issue soon. "The moratorium on Internet taxation is coming to an end. It is a very important issue," McCain said.The AeA, formerly the American Electronics Association, is urging President George W. Bush to join Congress in making permanent the research and development tax credit.

"We respectfully urge that you include in the budget for fiscal year 2002 a permanent extension of the research and development tax credit," William Archey, president and chief executive of AeA, said in a Feb. 6 letter. "The credit enjoys broad bipartisan support in Congress, and we were gratified that making it permanent was among the priorities articulated in the tax plan on which you campaigned."

AeA said much of the economic gains the United States enjoyed in the 1990s were the result of technology investments made in the 1980s.

"A permanent research and development tax credit will help us ensure increased technology investments that will bolster economic growth for decades to come," Archey said.

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