A new Senate proposal nicknamed the "internet kill switch" calls for allowing the President to control or even shut down parts of the internet during times of national emergency. Sources at CNET have obtained leaked versions of the proposed legislation which will allow the White House to declare a cybersecurity emergency and flip the switch on the internet.
The leaked documents indicate that the Department of Homeland Security stated that internet service providers, search engines, and software firms will be forced to comply with emergency measures, which can include shutting down US access to the web. Any company that fails to comply will be fined.
The legislation is proposed by Senator Lieberman (D-CT), and is formerly entitled Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act. Homeland Security will create a list of internet companies that it deems to be assets in protecting America during times of crisis by shutting down.
The National Center for Cybersecurity and Communications (NCCC) will then enforce emergency measures on these companies. The NCCC will be given the power to monitor the security status of private sector web sites in the US and other countries that could potentially cause serious harm to us. Private companies will also be required to participate in information sharing with the Feds. Owners of private websites will also have to certify in writing that they are following the cybersecurity guidelines.
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