Linux Sysadmin Blog

Big Brother Can Pull the Plug

- | Comments

A newly intorduced legislation in the Untited States senate can give the US government the ability to limit and even shut down Internet traffic of public and private companies. In order to do this the president would first have to issue an order of “cybersecurity emergency” followed by the order of “limitation or shutdown of internet traffic to and from any compromised federal government or United States critical infrastructure information system or network”.

Another troubling part of this legislation could allow the goverment to “establish a broad set of cybersecurity standards that would be imposed on the government and the private sector, including companies that provide software, IT work or other services to networks that are deemed to be critical infrastructure”. Given the government’s track record of defending their own networks this may be  a step backwards considering the fifty or so incidents in 2009 alone.

And last but least the good ‘ol saying “it’s who you know that what you know” may ring louder then ever. Under this legislation it would also be illegal for employees or contractors providing “cybersecurity services to any federal agency or an information system or network designated by the president, or the president’s designee, as a critical infrastructure information system or network, who is not licensed and certified under the program.” Obviosly Tom Parker director of security services at Securicom thinks the bill is a great idea considering the $3.3 millions dollars in federal contract money the company already accured.