Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Unplug the Internet: the Egyptian crisis revives debate in the U.S.

The almost total shutdown of the Internet for five days in Egypt, reopened the debate in the United States on the extent of power which must have the White House on the Network, in case of a major crisis. To his opponents, the bill seeking to place the hands of U.S. President a "switch" ("kill switch") endangers freedom of expression and other fundamental rights.

But to his supporters, this text, which makes its way through Congress would not allow Washington to suspend the Internet with one click. Hosni Mubarak when he disconnected the Internet throughout the country, the U.S. lawmakers behind the bill has cybersecurity immediately criticized the Egyptian president, saying he was "totally wrong".

"Our bill Cybersecurity is designed to protect U.S. cyber attacks from abroad" also provide the three parliamentarians. "We will never sign a bill authorizing the President, or anyone, to turn off the Internet," they continued, ensuring that "emergency or not, exercise such power is an affront to our Constitution," continued the senators Joe Lieberman ( Independent Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security of the Senate), Susan Collins (Republican) and Tom Carper (Democrat).

CONCERNS OF ASSOCIATIONS In June, 25 organizations of civil liberties, including the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), wrote to the MPs, informing them of their concern. "Changes are needed to ensure that cyber security measures do not impinge on freedom of expression, respect for privacy and other civil rights," stressed the associations.

In a blog, the president of the EFF, Cindy Cohn, for its part considers that "the lesson of Egypt is that nobody, not even the president of the United States, should be empowered to disconnect the Internet." In response, the trio has committed to a future law "explicitly prohibit the President to do what did President Mubarak."

No comments:

Post a Comment