Once upon a time, the Internet was a bastion of liberty and freedom, but now nation after nation is cracking down on it.
a possible reality worth noticing, and resisting if necessary.
Hint: If you’re going to suggest legislation that gives the government an option to take control over certain online information systems, don’t announce it at the same time a corrupt foreign regime shuts down the Internet.
A bill giving the president an Internet “kill switch” during times of emergency that failed to pass Congress last year will return this year, but with a revision that has many civil liberties advocates concerned: It will give the president the ability to shut down parts of the Internet without any court oversight.
An anonymous reader at yro.slashdot.org [02Feb11]
Egypt switched off its internet to stop protests, and the US Government is considering legislation that will give the President ‘kill switch’ powers over the internet as well. In Australia, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy — best known for his attempt to filter the country’s internet for child pornography and the country’s flagship national fibre broadband rollout, says such a scenario couldn’t occur.”
nope, not anytime soon in Australia.
schliz writes at yro.slashdot.org [04Feb11]
“Judging by the time it took for Egypt to go offline and back online, the Internet Society speculates that the country’s connectivity is controlled by a ‘series of phone calls’, rather than a ‘kill switch’. The Government-imposed internet blackout lasted five days, beginning last Friday, and ending on Wednesday.”
Some opponents of cybersecurity legislation wending its way through the US Congress have condemned the bill as a danger to free speech and civil liberties that would equip the White House with an Internet “kill switch.”
Officially, the bill goes by “Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010.” And a white paper from the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs insists that it would not create a “kill switch,” but rather “order emergency measures for our nation’s most critical infrastructure.”
The autocratic government of former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak ordered the shutdown of four major Internet service providers, effectively shuttering the Internet in Egypt for several days. Could that happen in the U.S. if the bill becomes law?
In the U.S., there are 2,000 to 4,000 Internet providers, many of whom virulently oppose government interference that would put a clamp-down on their businesses.
“When it comes to practicalities, I would be surprised if anything comes to (a kill switch),” says Reputation.com CEO Michael Fertik, a lawyer with expertise in constitutional law and Internet privacy law. “If (the bill and president) strays too far, it would be extremely unpopular.”
The Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010 (S. 3480) is a bill introduced in the United States Senate by Joe Lieberman (Independent Democrat, Connecticut), Susan Collins (Republican Party, Maine), and Tom Carper (Democratic Party, Delaware) on June 10, 2010. The stated purpose of the bill is to increase security in cyberspace and prevent attacks which could disable infrastructure such astelecommunications or disrupt the nation’s economy. The legislation would create an Office of Cyberspace Policy and a National Center for Cybersecurity and Communications. “.
the bill would allow the President to enact “emergency measures” in the case of a large scale cyber attack. The original bill granted the US President the authority to shut down part of the internet indefinitely, but in a later amendment the maximum time for which the President could control the network was reduced to 120 days. After this period, the networks will have to be brought up, unless Congress approves an extension.