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Most Americans Support an Internet Kill Switch

samzenpus posted about 4 years ago | from the please-take-my-freedoms-I-don't-deserve-them dept.

Government 398

Orome1 writes "Sixty-one percent of Americans said the President should have the ability to shut down portions of the Internet in the event of a coordinated malicious cyber attack, according to research by Unisys. The survey found that while Americans are taking proactive steps to protect themselves against cybercrime and identity theft, only slightly more than a third of Internet users in the US regularly use and update passwords on their mobile devices – creating a potentially huge security hole for organizations as more consumer devices invade the workplace. The findings illustrate that recent events such as the Stuxnet computer worm attack and the attempted Times Square car bombing may have heightened the American public's awareness of and concern over global and domestic cybersecurity threats."

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News: Most Americans. . . (2, Insightful)

milonssecretsn (1392667) | about 4 years ago | (#34041588)

. . . are idiots.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (1)

Securityemo (1407943) | about 4 years ago | (#34041674)

Nay, but most Americans have no idea about computers, let alone computer security. Ever tried explaining a buffer overflow stack-smashing attack to someone?

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (3, Funny)

gratuitous_arp (1650741) | about 4 years ago | (#34041760)

Ever tried explaining a buffer overflow stack-smashing attack to someone?

Only "for fun and profit."

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (1)

Venzor (1929328) | about 4 years ago | (#34041764)

Well, all bad things come from the internet, right?; If you cut off the internet they all stop and it's Peace and Harmony(tm)!

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (5, Insightful)

clarkn0va (807617) | about 4 years ago | (#34041802)

Nay, but most Americans have no idea about computers, let alone computer security.

This is not a question of computers or security so much as it is a question of the freedom of information, communication, expression and speech. Perhaps the propaganda machine has convinced the American public otherwise.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (2, Interesting)

Securityemo (1407943) | about 4 years ago | (#34042040)

Only the problem is that people are led to believe that this would somehow protect the internet or the assets connected to it. I can only hope that "internet kill switch" is a code word for more granular segregation mechanisms, or that the U.S. media is just spinning a yarn and Unisys is fishing for contracts.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (1)

hodet (620484) | about 4 years ago | (#34041834)

Exactly....most probably had no fucking clue what was being asked and probably didn't want to look stupid. Hey, if I am with the President I must be against the terrorists. Not picking on Americans, I don't think other countries citizens would fare much better.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (2, Funny)

cgenman (325138) | about 4 years ago | (#34041944)

may have heightened American's awareness and concern.

Maybe I'm just being pedantic, but hightened concern in the US doesn't normally equate to hightened awareness. We are still that country that bans matches on board of aircraft because of security "concerns," but allows on butane lighters because of a lack of awareness.

If American's security concerns about the internet were heightened, I wouldn't keep coming across people surfing with expired copies of Norton Antivirus on XP SP1 machines that spew more worthless zombie crap than George Romero.

"Hey, let's build in a big red button into the internet. That way, when the president needs to stop all communication, crashing lots of security systems and generally leading to anarchy and billions of dollars of lost productivity, he will be able to flip a Lexan shield and push the button. Don't worry, though, those crafty hackers will never be able to break through Lexan." You might as well mount a gun pointed at our country's head and put a big sticker on it in Chinese saying "please don't pull this trigger."

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041980)

I take issue with this. George Romero's movies are excellent.

There are plenty of other zombie movies, with which he's not involved, which are truly crap.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (1, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | about 4 years ago | (#34041722)

Regarding technology, that isn't a Troll.

Americans, by and large, are willfully ignorant of as much technology as they can avoid being coerced by necessity to understand.

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041868)

And English, or French, or Asians somehow have special knowledge the excludes them from this group? Really?

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (2, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | about 4 years ago | (#34042070)

And English, or French, or Asians somehow have special knowledge the excludes them from this group? Really?

They are not addicted to the viewpoint "if its not in The Bible, I don't need to know it".

Not so much a gain of "special knowledge" as a lack of "special knowledge"

Re:News: Most Americans. . . (1)

calzones (890942) | about 4 years ago | (#34042076)

Where's the idiocracy tag when you need it?

This just in. (1, Insightful)

bhcompy (1877290) | about 4 years ago | (#34041602)

61% of Americans need to be cockpunched. Thoroughly.

Re:This just in. (5, Funny)

thestudio_bob (894258) | about 4 years ago | (#34041726)

Just to clarify, is that to hit someone with your cock? or is that to hit someone in the cock? If it's the latter, then your solution may be flawed since 61% may include both male and female. You may need to throw in a vaginachop to cover all your bases.

Re:This just in. (1)

Reilaos (1544173) | about 4 years ago | (#34041852)

That sounds like something that Vince Offer could get behind.

Re:This just in. (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 4 years ago | (#34042016)

The results are a reflection of how the question was asked. If they ahd asked:

"Do you support the president having a kill switch to remove Websites that post articles criticizing the president or the government?" The result would probably be just 10-20% in favor.

Re:This just in. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042056)

You may need to throw in a vaginachop to cover all your bases.

it's called a cunt punt...
http://www.eyrie.org.uk/Demotivationpics/cunt_punt.jpg

Re:This just in. (4, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about 4 years ago | (#34041730)

61% of Americans need to be cockpunched

50.9% of Americans do not have a cock to punch. (2000 census)

Re:This just in. (2, Insightful)

cgenman (325138) | about 4 years ago | (#34041976)

61% may need to use their brain more. That doesn't mean they have said device with which to satisfy that need.

It's all in how you phrase the question. (3, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | about 4 years ago | (#34041758)

Sixty-one percent of Americans said the President should have the ability to shut down portions of the Internet in the event of a coordinated malicious cyber attack, according to research by Unisys.

And 39% think that during an "attack" the President should NOT be able to shut down the route used by the attackers.

I'm thinking that that 39% include the people who understand that "cyber attack" is a meaningless term and that no authority should be granted on the basis of a meaningless term.

Here, try this instead:

Sixty-one percent of Americans said the President should have the ability to shut down portions of FaceBook in the event of a coordinated malicious FaceBook attack, according to research by Unisys.

If it makes as much sense as the original then there is a problem.

Re:It's all in how you phrase the question. (4, Insightful)

nedlohs (1335013) | about 4 years ago | (#34041882)

Or:

"The President should have the ability to shut down Google in the event of a coordinated malicious cyber attack on irs.gov."

or:

"In the case of a malcious DDoS attack the President will assist with the mother of all DoS attacks."

Re:It's all in how you phrase the question. (1)

vlm (69642) | about 4 years ago | (#34042082)

or

"In case of yet another microsoft windows security hole the president will shut down all computers, including macs"

Re:It's all in how you phrase the question. (1)

Stregano (1285764) | about 4 years ago | (#34042064)

So this means the ability to shut down a private server? Either that or the physical wire is disconnected, or maybe they shut down communications with a satellite. Call me crazy or simply misinformed, but if you pull a kill switch on a satellite, how do you turn it back on? Also, I would be pissed as hell if Obama shut down my server. So maybe they disconnect the wires themselves. This sounds possible, but also expensive to do. Maybe there is code that goes into specific servers and does not allow them to connect to specific other servers. GoDaddy does not even let me modify a .htaccess file and I know what I am doing, but Obama can bust out a kill switch?

Re:This just in. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041770)

Now if only people could grasp the difference between majority rule and consensus rule.

In majority rule, the idiots give one person the ability to control all communications.

In consensus rule [metagovernment.org] , the best, most creative ideas are allowed to flourish, and no one person is ever given sweeping power.

Re:This just in. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042052)

So there would be a consensus to cockpunch Obama?

Re:This just in. (2, Funny)

scubamage (727538) | about 4 years ago | (#34041788)

61% of Americans need to be cockpunched. Thoroughly.

I believe you are referring to hitting someone with a rooster, otherwise half of the population would not be covered by your opinion.

Re:This just in. (1)

kernelphr34k (1179539) | about 4 years ago | (#34041932)

I concur!

61% want a kill switch because they are non IT people that really dont care. While the other 39% of people have a clue and realize how much of a disaster it will be if the pres has a kill switch to our interwebs.

95% of statistics are made up anyways.... sigh...

Who are these "Americans".... (1)

peteinok (1825618) | about 4 years ago | (#34041606)

and where do I go to kick them in the balls? 61% my ass.

Re:Who are these "Americans".... (1)

MyLongNickName (822545) | about 4 years ago | (#34041774)

So 61% of America's balls are in your ass? Not that there is anything wrong with that....

Re:Who are these "Americans".... (1)

revlayle (964221) | about 4 years ago | (#34041854)

Nothing wrong... maybe a bit excessive? Just sayin'

I mean I find two balls MORE than enough.

... WHAT? I'M NOT GAY

Re:Who are these "Americans".... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042060)

He must be in Afghanistan.

LOL! (1)

Nickodeemus (1067376) | about 4 years ago | (#34041608)

RTS

Most Americans (5, Insightful)

countertrolling (1585477) | about 4 years ago | (#34041610)

should be more careful what they wish for

Re:Most Americans (3, Insightful)

saider (177166) | about 4 years ago | (#34041754)

I agree. They probably think that stopping Chinese hackers means disconnecting the connection to China. They do not realize that it is their (our) computers that are doing the attacking and that the internet kill switch will interrupt their eBaying and porn surfing.

Re:Most Americans (5, Insightful)

chemicaldave (1776600) | about 4 years ago | (#34041840)

Most Americans' understanding of the Internet is likely limited to email, social networking, and Youtube. They probably hold a poor grasp of how the Internet works. Furthermore, the definition and scope of an "Internet kill switch" are unclear.

I'm actually surprised at how low the poll results are.

No coincidence... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041614)

It's no coincidence that it also happens to be true that 61% of Americans are complete idiots.

Re:No coincidence... (1)

peteinok (1825618) | about 4 years ago | (#34041634)

61% of the time, 100% of the time.

In some ways... (5, Insightful)

nebaz (453974) | about 4 years ago | (#34041622)

I'm glad that the US isn't a direct democracy.

Re:In some ways... (5, Informative)

MyLongNickName (822545) | about 4 years ago | (#34041818)

How in the world is this troll? We are not a direct democracy PRECISELY type for this reason. Someone needs to brush up on their Civics class...

Re:In some ways... (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about 4 years ago | (#34041968)

Beware the idea of keeping the people out the real decisions because they are too dumb or inexperienced: getting people dumbed down and their lowest instincts tickled so that an elite can rule over them with the praetext of protecting society from itself becomes feasible.

I dunno how it would end up for national security.
But for money policies we left the matter to central banks so we could have stability and dunno what else, and debt became widespread, money rules de facto over law, insolvent banks compete with their fractional reserve in the same league of your hard earned money. Not the best deal.

Most Americans? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041636)

Most Americans [citation needed]

Most Americans? (1, Funny)

Nidi62 (1525137) | about 4 years ago | (#34041638)

Really? Hunh. They never even asked me.

Internet is the fastest method for info to travel (5, Insightful)

rs1n (1867908) | about 4 years ago | (#34041642)

A killswitch means we no longer get instantaneous information, either, should we have to use it. Cell phones don't necessarily reach all parts of the world. I'm not so sure I'm willing to give up being able to get news right as it happens just because of threat of cyberwar. People can unhook their own machines from the net -- that's fine. That's the last line of defense that anyone can implement for themselves. Just don't cut me off because you feel it protects you better.

Re:Internet is the fastest method for info to trav (1)

couchslug (175151) | about 4 years ago | (#34041748)

"A killswitch means we no longer get instantaneous information, either, should we have to use it."

Amateur Radio, the original geek hobby, still exists. Packet radio for teh (slow baud rate) win!

Re:Internet is the fastest method for info to trav (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041996)

Amateur radio doesn't count since only 0.000000018% of the population has access to the hardware, has a license and know how to use it.

This means that if there is a killswitch, the government gets back control of the information (Fox News, etc).

the consent manufacture is started (0, Troll)

JonySuede (1908576) | about 4 years ago | (#34041654)

The consent manufacture is started. expect to ear more about this in the next few months.....

Re:the consent manufacture is started (1)

JonySuede (1908576) | about 4 years ago | (#34041738)

to the one who mod me as troll, you would gain a better understanding of society if you read Chomsky manufacturing consent and if you do not want to read you can watch : http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5631882395226827730# [google.com]

Re:the consent manufacture is started (1)

gratuitous_arp (1650741) | about 4 years ago | (#34041922)

JonySuede, thank you for the link. Always interesting to hear what Chomsky has to say, even though I don't agree with all of it. In this case I think he is 100% correct. Both posts deserve mod-ups.

No. (0, Flamebait)

Oricalchos (1339065) | about 4 years ago | (#34041658)

If you're so lazy/stupid that you can't follow simple security guidelines, you deserve to be taken advantage of.
Rest of the world>U.S.A.
No, you do not deserve a kill switch.

Re:No. (1)

countSudoku() (1047544) | about 4 years ago | (#34042018)

Depends on which way the "switch" works. I'm for cutting off botnet mules and insecure users like those lazy/stupids you're referring to! So, we DO need a kill switch, just one in the direction of the spam, botnets, malware, and Windows users. Just kidding on the last one. You can take my word for it, I almost named my daughter Princess Leia. So, you KNOW I'm a bro!

Re:No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042026)

This.

The rest of the world is a fucked up, bass-ackwards multi-cultural shit-hole of a cesspool. How is that greater than the USA? If the rest of the world was greater than the USA, why did the USA need to fight WWI and WWII to stop you from utterly destroying each other? If you're so great, why the fuck does capital "C" Communism still flourish? Why have so many dictatorships sprung forth from your womb?

The reason the US is actually greater than the rest of the world, including your part, is that we revel in our fucked-up-ness. We learn to tolerate it, ridicule it, and embrace it. What do you do? You ostracize it, persecute it, and attempt to make it disappear. Pretty much the exact opposite, and it creates global turmoil at every opportunity.

Yep, the rest of the world could use a huge fucking syringe full of Good Ol' American tolerance.

PS) I am making a knowing glance toward muslims, which I believe are at the heart of intolerance on Earth in present times.

The constitutional republic was designed (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041670)

...to protect us from democracy.

Users vs. Internet (1)

sd123 (325151) | about 4 years ago | (#34041678)

As Internet becomes more liberated and experimental, seems like users using it are becoming more conservative. I find that very interesting.

Re:Users vs. Internet (1)

saider (177166) | about 4 years ago | (#34041752)

How do you think the conservative right gets their porn? Any other way risks public exposure and ridicule.

Re:Users vs. Internet (4, Insightful)

JonySuede (1908576) | about 4 years ago | (#34041806)

the Internet was liberated and experimental from scratch, you must not be on the same Internet as I am because as time goes I only see more restriction and more commercialization ...

Re:Users vs. Internet (5, Insightful)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | about 4 years ago | (#34041812)

More liberated and experimental? Friend, that's what it was. The internet is becoming more staid, regulated, etc. It's becoming more conservative as it becomes more mainstream. People who wouldn't have touched it a decade ago now use it every day, and that's changing the culture of the internet and the way all of society perceives it. However to boomers and older it's something that "we" can obviously do without, because they didn't need it when they were growing up, so who cares? It's just a toy to them. They may casually participate in it, but they cannot (broadly and generally) understand its real importance to contemporary and future society.

Re:Users vs. Internet (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 4 years ago | (#34041838)

As Internet becomes more liberated and experimental

Which Internet are you using? The Internet we have now is just a mishmash of businessmen and scam artists looking to make a quick buck, with a couple barely noticeably rays of hope coming from the hacker community.

Honest Results? (4, Insightful)

Venzor (1929328) | about 4 years ago | (#34041682)

From TFA:

"A majority of the American population is willing to grant the President the authority to cut short their Internet access to protect both U.S. assets and citizens, suggesting that the public is taking cyber warfare very seriously," said Patricia Titus, VP and CISO, Unisys. "Our survey shows that the American public recognizes the danger of a cyber attack and wants the federal government to take an active role in extending the nation's cyber defense. It will be up to officials in all branches of the federal government to respond to this call to action in a way that is measured and well planned."

I suspect selective polling, ambiguous questions, and/or selective interpretation of the results. I really wish they'd post the surveys' actual results, scope of participants, etc. for these kinds of things.

Most 'Mericans Support Proposition 19 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041686)

the proof is here [atom.com] .

Cheers to Lou Dobbs.

Yours In Humboldt,
K. Trout

Of course Americans would "say yes" to this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041688)

After all, when they get shut down then they'd be able to sue and get zillions. It's the American way dude!

Obligatory question (1, Informative)

bonch (38532) | about 4 years ago | (#34041694)

Sure...give the government an internet kill switch. What could possibly go wrong?

You know what's really sad? (4, Insightful)

lavagolemking (1352431) | about 4 years ago | (#34041698)

What's really sad is that the survey is probably at least close to accurate. There are so many people out there today who think they can get some "real justice" if they give up their rights to "fight terrorism" that I am having a hard time tearing apart the article.

Re:You know what's really sad? (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | about 4 years ago | (#34041822)

The findings illustrate that recent events such as the Stuxnet computer worm attack and the attempted Times Square car bombing may have heightened the American public's awareness of and concern over global and domestic cybersecurity threats.

Sure, because most members of the American public have heard of Stuxnet, and know that it incorporated multiple vulns on multiple devices/OSes, and was targeting Iranian nuke facilities. Puhleeeese.

Please take my freedom (4, Insightful)

gratuitous_arp (1650741) | about 4 years ago | (#34041700)

from the please-take-my-freedoms-I-don't-deserve-them dept.

Not much more to say.

Sad truths (3, Informative)

Apothem (1921856) | about 4 years ago | (#34041714)

I suppose a lot of this comes from the fact that not EVERYONE is aware of what a killswitch would even mean. If you think about how much people overall understand the internet, the majority of people out there probably just assumed it would be nice to have. It is very unfortunate that we live in such an age where ignorance is more dangerous than anything else.

Re:Sad truths (2, Insightful)

redhog (15207) | about 4 years ago | (#34041826)

Hasn't that always been the case??

Re:Sad truths (2, Interesting)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 4 years ago | (#34041928)

I suppose a lot of this comes from the fact that not EVERYONE is aware of what a killswitch would even mean. If you think about how much people overall understand the internet, the majority of people out there probably just assumed it would be nice to have. It is very unfortunate that we live in such an age where ignorance is more dangerous than anything else.

I believe this is more of 69% "don't know what the killswitch is". So they think that in the event of an attack, hitting the killswitch will magically kill the attacker or such. If you defined it as "during a cyberattack, would you justify turning off the Internet", you'll find that proportion is probably "no". After all, people need their Facebook/Farmville/Netflix/Hulu/online shopping/etc.

That and it probably sounds like a nice idea. But they don't realize just how much of their daily routines depend on the Internet.

Re:Sad truths (1)

Platinumrat (1166135) | about 4 years ago | (#34042068)

And the kill switch will keep them ignorant just when they need the information.

Be afraid, consume. (4, Insightful)

hypernation (1900922) | about 4 years ago | (#34041728)

This would never be abused, would it?

That's ridiculous (1)

HermMunster (972336) | about 4 years ago | (#34041734)

Most people have no idea of what it is, nor have the vast majority of the American public even heard about it let alone taken the time to become educated about it.

portions of the internet (1)

phek (791955) | about 4 years ago | (#34041778)

I think the key here is that it says "portions of the internet." That even makes me want to say yes. Had they of asked if they thought "should the president be allowed to shut off americas ability to communicate with each other over the internet" which is what would actually pass, I'm sure the results of the poll would have dramatically changed.

In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041780)

...most americans are ignorant of the details of important topics, and can't be bothered to educate themselves before spouting off a dangerous opinion.

Most Americans watch Fox News (-1, Troll)

anti-NAT (709310) | about 4 years ago | (#34041786)

Need I say more?

Re:Most Americans watch Fox News (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041876)

Touché

Re:Most Americans watch Fox News (4, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | about 4 years ago | (#34042008)

What?

39% of Americans say they regularly get news from a cable channel.

Only 40% of Republicans regularly watch Fox News.

I'm sure you were just trying to make a point... but when your point hinges on more than 50% of Americans getting their news from FN and thus are stupid, and it's not even close to 50% ... the point seems to kinda fall apart? :)

Re:Most Americans watch Fox News (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042010)

Most Americans voted in W. Twice.

What the fuck is a coordinated cyber attack? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34041810)

What is that? No more facebook? No more twitter? No more porn? How would that affect you? Would that be like not heaving Internet due to the fact that the president killed the Internet?

Internet emergency controls (3, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about 4 years ago | (#34041830)

Arguably, we should have some emergency controls for the Internet. I'd suggest that the following emergency systems be implemented:

  • Mail servers forward only text email, stripping all MIME content. Useful in case of serious virus trouble.
  • Cell phone switches handle voice and SMS messages only. Maybe raw pictures on some platforms. No downloads, no "apps", no tethering, no IP.
  • Under severe overload conditions during a cyber-attack, the FCC should be able to order an advertising shutdown. All advertising servers must go offline until the emergency is over.
  • All this should be publicly tested occasionally, like the Emergency Broadcast System.

This would be enough to deal with serious overloads, outages, or viruses, but doesn't have censorship implications.

Re:Internet emergency controls (4, Insightful)

lwsimon (724555) | about 4 years ago | (#34042080)

Any time the government is in control, there is a censorship issue.

Facebook (1)

Sunshinerat (1114191) | about 4 years ago | (#34041836)

I am all for it as long as they do not touch my Facebook.

In other words, 61% think... (4, Interesting)

Dalzhim (1588707) | about 4 years ago | (#34041842)

... that the design principle at the foundation of the Internet should be re-engineered. The Internet was meant to be a means of communication that couldn't be severed easily.

!Generalizing at all (2, Insightful)

adamjcoon (1583361) | about 4 years ago | (#34041858)

IMHO,
61% << "Most"...

61% ~= "Not quite two-thirds"

Poor reporting (5, Insightful)

demonbug (309515) | about 4 years ago | (#34041864)

When are reporters going to learn that they need to include the actual wording of the question posed in the poll for people to actually understand what was asked? From what little information is in the article, there is a wide gamut of ways the question might have been posed that would affect the outcome. Why, oh why, can't they learn to include the actual question in addition to their canned analysis of the results? 100% of Americans think that the linked article is useless (plus or minus 99.99997%).

Re:Poor reporting (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about 4 years ago | (#34042012)

When are reporters going to learn that they need to include the actual wording of the question posed in the poll for people to actually understand what was asked?

Even that is not enough. Different people interpret questions differently depending on their own circumstances. Here's a trivial example - ask a question about "coke" and in some parts of the USA many people will think you are talking about sodas in general, not just coca-cola. The discrepancies get even wider when you ask a question of people in a foreign country but try to interpret their answers in the context of your own country.

Unisys (2, Insightful)

Dotren (1449427) | about 4 years ago | (#34041870)

Should I be surprised that Unisys [wikipedia.org] , a corporation which describes itself as selling IT solutions to "governments around the world" [unisys.com] , comes up with a survey result that shows a "majority" of Americans support a possible government program that would likely see the government purchasing a large amount of product from Unisys?

Not is call. (1)

Tei (520358) | about 4 years ago | (#34041872)

USA don't own internet. Is a global thing.

If USA want to disable free information disemination in a disaster, can plug the cable on his "house", but sould not touch other countries free roam of information. Is not USA what have to decide that.

Yes vs No vs Wtf? (1)

asheyna (1929986) | about 4 years ago | (#34041890)

Yes, but how many of those people actually understood the question?

Why? (1)

ThunderBird89 (1293256) | about 4 years ago | (#34041894)

Seriously, why does the US even need a kill switch? In fact, why are those machines accessible from outside in the first place? Even more so, why aren't the actual control devices airgapped from the rest of the network? What happened to security in the architecture?

this type of question (2, Insightful)

nimbius (983462) | about 4 years ago | (#34041912)

should not go up for a vote by "most americans." I've worked helpdesk and computer systems engineering my entire career, and can assure you the very same person who uses his cdrom as a cupholder and assumes clickjacking to be some sort of fetish, cant possibly imagine what a cyber attack is outside of what the last die hard movie and 4 iterations of the terminator movie franchise have taught him. In addition, many americans dont understand the internet was designed during the cold war...by its very definition and design, killing it with a single point of activation should not be possible. Lastly, America has been handling cyber-attacks the same way it has since the inception of the internet, with skilled engineers and administrators operating re actively and proactively to situations as they arise and can be anticipated.

I cant in good conscience subscribe to the hullabaloo that is the "cyber attack" and i dont encourage slashdotters to either. Its present definition is as laughable as the options for defense and solution to its ire. I may be speaking controversially, however i also feel this is just one more scientific field in which americans are poorly equipped to think critically of and seem to be told to just appreciate that fact. In relation, if a majority of americans refute or deny such scientific concepts such as climate change and evolution, what makes them the least bit qualified to comment on more modern technology?

Wait a sec... (4, Insightful)

kingramon0 (411815) | about 4 years ago | (#34041938)

Sooo.... We want to stop a malicious DOS attack on the Internet by... DOSing the Internet?

Brilliant!

Not sure I like it (1)

TuxCoder (1641657) | about 4 years ago | (#34041978)

I don't think I like this idea. What am I going to do if I'm in the middle of posting a comment on /. when all of a sudden my Inter

Honest Question (1)

rakuen (1230808) | about 4 years ago | (#34041984)

Let's put aside the ramifications of giving the President this power and just consider the hypothetical situation. A server is being bombarded by requests, or there's a malicious attack, or whatever. Wouldn't the administrators be smart enough to just pull the server off the network for a while until they get the system under control? You know, remove connections to the outside Internet, physical or otherwise. It's just a cable or configuration setting away.

It seems to me something you'd notice and get done before the bureaucracy even got their foot out the door.

Probably too obvious of a solution... (2, Insightful)

anyGould (1295481) | about 4 years ago | (#34041998)

Since the internet, by design, is built to route around damage (and taking "portions" offline would count), wouldn't the only real way to prevent an attack be to remove either the source or destination computers from the network?

And removing the destination system would by far be the simplest and least disruptive way to do it. (At least until you track down the source computer).

In a related note (1)

Rooked_One (591287) | about 4 years ago | (#34042002)

61% of American's can't locate Iraq on a map. (Actually its probably higher, but I had to make something up ;)

how about the reverse? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042006)

In the event of an emergency, the internet would have the power to temporarily shut down the president.

That might make more sense.

TINC.

Tonight's news (-1, Flamebait)

dramaley (20773) | about 4 years ago | (#34042022)

61% of Americans are stupid. Film at 11.

I can't believe this thread has gone on this long (1)

wygit (696674) | about 4 years ago | (#34042034)

... without mentioning the possible benefit of stopping Skynet when it attempts to take over?

Sample size (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042044)

Let's see, they had a sample size of 1000+ out of 300,000,000+ people in the US - and 10,575 people worldwide out of ~ 7 billion. Wow, I'd say that was conclusive, wouldn't you? And how does the sample size break down in terms of economic, geographical, technological, political (et al.) divisions?

IOW, this is rubbish. I did my own survey and it says that 100% of people disagree with the kill switch (sample size: 1).

of course the president could invent a crisis.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#34042058)

to control the flow of information to keep himself in power. Presidents have certainly used crises to their benefit before, what's to keep them from doing it again? Next thing you know, they'll be looking for yet more ways to limit the first amendment, (which, to those who don't know, preserves the right to free speech -- notice that I said *preserves*, not *grants*).

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