Friday, August 28, 2009

RED ALERT: Bill would give Obama 'emergency' control of Internet

Veteran technology reporter Declan McCullah observes that a revised cyber-security bill permits the president to "seize temporary control of private sector networks during a so-called... emergency."

The bill would allow the president to unilaterally declare "a cybersecurity emergency" for non-governmental computer networks in order to respond to a threat.

Other sections of the bill go even further: they proscribe government-controlled certification programs that license computer security professionals. And it goes on to demand that certain, privately-owned computer systems and networks be managed only by those professionals who have achieved the federal certification.

A reproduction of the relevant section of the bill is available at PoliteTechBot.

"I think the redraft, while improved, remains troubling due to its vagueness," said Larry Clinton, president of the Internet Security Alliance, which counts representatives of Verizon, Verisign, Nortel, and Carnegie Mellon University on its board. "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."

Representatives of other large Internet and telecommunications companies expressed concerns about the bill in a teleconference with Rockefeller's aides this week...

Hey, it's only centralized government control of the Internet.

What could possibly go wrong with that?

In all seriousness: if you were elected President and wanted to transform the U.S. into a third-world banana republic like Venezuela, how would your policies differ from those of Obama?

Hat tip: Matt Drudge.

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