E-Commerce in the House

11 August 1999
Electronic commerce moved up the ranks after the U.S. House Commerce Committee approved two bills last week: the Consumer and Investor Access to Information Act of 1999 and the Electronic Signature in Global and National Commerce Act.

The Information bill will provide greater access to public information collected in online databases and make private databases more secure. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, online brokers and consumer groups support the bill while legal publishers and realtors lobbied against it.

The Electronic Signature bill will equate the legal standing of electronic signatures with that of handwritten signatures. It has been approved by the Information Technology Industry Council and will go before the entire House for a vote in September. "This bill will make shopping online more convenient and give consumers greater peace of mind about their transactions," says Rep. Thomas Bliley (R-Va.).