New Bill Would Give President Power To Shut Off Internet In Case Of Emergency

August 28, 2009

US (ChattahBox) – Companies and Internet security groups are protesting the introduction of a bill that would allow the president to seize control of the Internet and cut off access to the private sector in the case of a “cybersecurity emergency”.

The bill was introduced originally as a joint effort between Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), and Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine). Since then Rockefeller and his aides have been redrafting the bill, which was originally turned away.

But many say that the ambiguous language and sweeping power makes it a dangerous bill that they still refuse to support.

“I think the redraft, while improved, remains troubling due to its vagueness,” Larry Clinton of the Internet Security Alliance was quoted by CNET.

“It is unclear what authority Sen. Rockefeller thinks is necessary over the private sector. Unless this is clarified, we cannot properly analyze, let alone support the bill.”

The bill would more or less allow the president the power to appoint “cybersecurity agents”, and to shut off private access to the Internet, in the case of an emergency.

It has been equated to former President Bush, who grounded all commercial aircraft on Sept. 11, after the Towers were struck in a terrorist attack.

The proposed bill would also have serious privacy implications, as the government would be given access to information acquired in periodic sweeps of private networks.

In the end, the redraft seems to be more or less the same as the original controversial bill. The language may be different, but the same measures are being proposed, without addition limits on power.

It is doubtful this bill will get much support until that changes.

Source


Comments

3 Responses to “New Bill Would Give President Power To Shut Off Internet In Case Of Emergency”

  1. Okpulot Taha on August 28th, 2009 5:24 pm

    This bill is idiocy. I cannot wrap my mind around such a display of stupidity.

    I day trade stocks. I have a live stock market feed. This is how I earn extra money for our family during retirement. This Obama takeover would shut down my stock market feed, would shut down my financial efforts.

    Mine is one example of zillions. Shutting down the internet would cut off banking, cut off many emergency services, cut off a lot of critical medical services and would cut off ability to communicate across America during a time communication is critical.

    Obama and his boys are so very stupid. Best security for critical “national security interest” systems is “air gap” security. This is simply unplugging sensitive systems from our public internet. Such stupidity on the part of our government! This stupidity is reflected in this bill.

    Our government, our energy infrastructure, our military systems, all and more have an ability to establish private secure intranet systems through cable, microwave and satellite services. Many of our sensitive services are already on private intranet systems. Our nation is already crisscrossed with private secured data transmission methods.

    Ability to shut down our public internet is simply stupid. Not only stupid, this is reactive rather than proactive. A need to shut down our internet is direct evidence of our internet already being compromised; much too late. Once compromised, upon turning our internet “back on” those problems still exist and will spread. This turning off our internet does nothing to cure “infection” in the system.

    A proactive method is to create private and secured intranet systems for sensitive services, an intranet “unplugged” from the public internet. A secured unique system, strengthening security, this is the right approach.

    This bill is not only idiotic, this bill is dangerous; creates complacency and a false sense of security.

    Okpulot Taha
    Choctaw Nation
    Puma Politics

  2. Sylvia on August 28th, 2009 7:39 pm

    Okpulot Taha offers a solution to the security problem.
    “A proactive method is to create private and secured intranet systems for sensitive services, an intranet “unplugged” from the public internet. A secured unique system, strengthening security, this is the right approach.”

    I suspect this bill is more of a way for the government to expand and get fingers into another pot than a real concern for security.
    Can anybody say Orwellian?

    Those who were paying attention to Iran this spring saw what a government can do when it shuts down the internet.

    Yes, Okpulot Taha this bill is idiocy, stupidity and dangerous.

  3. Do not make me turn off the internet! « Stuff on September 1st, 2009 7:14 pm

    […] Sources: Cnet and Chattabox […]

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