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US Gov't Mistakenly Shuts Down 84,000 Sites

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the our-bad dept.

Censorship 296

Chaonici writes "Last Friday, the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) seized ten websites accused of selling counterfeit goods or trafficking in child pornography. However, in the process, about 84,000 unrelated websites were taken offline when the government mistakenly seized the domain of a large DNS provider, FreeDNS. By now, the mistake has been corrected and most of the websites' domains again point to the sites themselves, rather than an intimidating domain seizure image. In a press release, the DHS praised themselves for taking down those ten websites, but completely failed to acknowledge their massive blunder."

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Welcome to the USA (3, Insightful)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226638)

Where due process only exists for the highest bidder.

Re:Welcome to the USA (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226680)

My favourite oxymoron is "American freedom".

Re:Welcome to the USA (4, Funny)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226788)

Where due process only exists for the highest bidder.

Now come on - it wasn't that bad. Let's see ... 10 out of 84,000 ... that's not quite as good as the average baseball player but just about on par with a weather reporter. All in all I'd say they had better accuracy than we thought they would (though we all hoped for a bit more).

Re:Welcome to the USA (5, Insightful)

Garridan (597129) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226886)

Indeed. If I were among these 84,000 site owners, I would be talking to a lawyer about a very large libel suit.

Re:Welcome to the USA (5, Informative)

ugen (93902) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226968)

Quote:
"As with previous seizures, ICE convinced a District Court judge to sign a seizure warrant, and then contacted the domain registries to point the domains in question to a server that hosts the warning message. However, somewhere in this process a mistake was made and as a result the domain of a large DNS service provider was seized."

You may not like this, but a warrant signed by a judge *is* due process.

Re:Welcome to the USA (2, Informative)

rwade (131726) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227100)

Well, it's certainly process, but it's clearly not due

Re:Welcome to the USA (1)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227364)

Aren't legal definitions great? It's so easy to say one thing and mean something completely different.

Re:Welcome to the USA (4, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227396)

Only if they actually read and understand it, then weigh the competing interests carefully. Rubber stamping any old thing shoved under their nose doesn't cut it.

If a judge actually signed off on the 84,000 sites being grabbed, then he failed due process. If that's NOT what the warrent said then it's the FBI's failure. Either way, the domain holders WERE denied due process.

Naturally, whoever it is, I'll bet we can expect that sincere public apology to each and every individual domain holder and any of their visitors who were caused undue concern as well as a hefty settlement for the really serious libel any day now :-)

Re:Welcome to the USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226994)

You a**holes were constantly bashing Bush over crap like this. Well as you can see, it's not Bush. And it's not even Obama. It's big government in general. They have gotten so frickin' big the law doesn't apply to them anymore. Don't like copyright infringement? Take the domain. Ignore the fact it's a civil matter. IANAL, thank God.

Re:Welcome to the USA (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227024)

Not size that is the issue, just that it only works for the highest bidder.

Re:Welcome to the USA (1)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227088)

That's because only the highest bidder can afford the biggest government

Re:Welcome to the USA (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227230)

Letting other less rich folks buy the government would not help.

Pres can't fix Bush/Chertoff/Ridge mistake immed. (2)

rwade (131726) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227106)

Oh so a President can change the way the entire government works overnight? Let's not forget who set up Homeland Security in the first place...

Re:Welcome to the USA (0, Troll)

Lawrence_Bird (67278) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227304)

renice -20 `pgrep due` -u individual -g liberty

Re:Welcome to the USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227316)

The real story is when DHS showed up to pull the plug, they were "lunged" at and felt a great fear for their lives from the other domains. They acted quickly and defended themselves and in the process, 84,000 domains were killed. An internal investigation showed every DHS agent present backed that exact story up and oddly even some agents that were not there said the same thing. There was video from one of the agents helmet cams but right after they entered the building, the camera failed. They are working with the vendor to make sure that does not happen again. A DHS spokesman stated that "if was not for their advance tactical training, someone from the task force may have got hurt from the aggressive actions of the those domains"

You can wait a few years and maybe if your lucky you can get a FOIA reply from them that will show exactly what they are saying now actually happened. Or DHS/ICE will just not give any information because they don't want to embarrass anyone in the Obama administration.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/12/AR2010101206295.html [washingtonpost.com]

http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/virginia/2011/02/prince-william-sue-feds-over-immigration-records [washingtonexaminer.com]

I truly fear this forth branch of government that does not have the original "checks and balances" that the others have.
         

ORLY? (2)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226642)

Was it really done mistakenly?

Or was it a test of how to shut down large parts of the Internet in case Egypt style revolution starts in USA and the government needs to shut down flow of the information?

Re:ORLY? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226690)

time to go work on your ham radio certification.

Re:ORLY? (1, Troll)

siddesu (698447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226750)

Of course, it was done by mistake. The last thing you want to show your enemy before the real battle begins is your true capabilities. And I saw that the battle is imminent in the news last week. "It could happen in the US" was written in red, flaming letters on video walls across many newsrooms in this country. The end is nigh.

Re:ORLY? (-1, Flamebait)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226854)

Fuck your conspiracy bullshit.

seriously.

Fuck you.

Re:ORLY? (0)

thehostiles (1659283) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226946)

ahem, you do not need a formal conspiracy when interests converge. There are people in power who will do nigh anything to keep that power. Why is a conspiracy needed to assume that people will try to keep what they have?

Re:ORLY? (2)

VanGarrett (1269030) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227016)

That would be a tremendously ineffective way of locking down the internet. Seizure of DNS server domains will prevent domain names from being resolved, but if the IP address is known, then the site can still be reached. Furthermore, certain types of gateway DNS servers cache domains that have been looked up, so a great deal of Facebook users sitting in their offices may not even notice for a while.

This raises an interesting question... (5, Interesting)

Senes (928228) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226662)

How many people now have friends or family thinking they're pedophiles because of this little 'oops' from the government?

Re:This raises an interesting question... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226810)

The better question is if it'll create a backlash or even more of a "OMG the pedos are everywhere, think of the children" stampede. Remember, the police have no interest in downplaying the threat and their budgets and there's a molester lurking on every corner of the intertubes. It's like all their "crushing blows", there always seem to be people left for more blows.

Re:This raises an interesting question... (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227048)

Do you even have to ask? Logic and rational thinking go right out the window once people hear that so-and-so was accused of anything related to possession (let alone distribution or production) of child pornography; people do not even bother to wait for the conclusion of a trial before they banish someone from the community.

Re:This raises an interesting question... (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227280)

That's kind of sad, it seems like even people that are suspicious of government fall for it without asking questions. It's just one of those go-to conversation stoppers. I shudder to think if corrupt law enforcement start planting evidence.

Re:This raises an interesting question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226874)

That would be terrible. Imagine how horribly alarming it would be to check your site and see that.

that is what I was thinking (1)

Presto Vivace (882157) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226900)

what if it happened to your business? what do you do then?

Re:that is what I was thinking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226990)

what if it happened to your business? what do you do then?

What if you spent a little money on your business instead of using free dynamic dns?
($1/month can get you a very good shared-host, http://www.lrehosting.com/ [lrehosting.com] is one example. I have several clients using them.)

Re:that is what I was thinking (1)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227062)

You shouldn't fucking have to.

Re:that is what I was thinking (1)

mywhitewolf (1923488) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227118)

I think you're missing the point.

Re:that is what I was thinking (2)

Kvasio (127200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227276)

I'd rather use free dns from a few different providers (so having multiple secondary DNSs). I use one from my registrar, https://freedns.42.pl/ [42.pl] and http://xname.org/ [xname.org]

Re:This raises an interesting question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226956)

That's an excellent point, because just like these sites got yanked based on the presumption of guilt (because they're part of a TLD that allegedly included kiddie porn sites), and just like accused child molesters are presumed guilty by the public (even when found "not guilty" by the courts), the operators of these sites will now be presumed guilty by anyone who visited them. Because that's what our society does whenever "child" and "sex" come anywhere within nine months of each other: It leaps frantically to judgment, and no amount of truth or explanation after the fact will erase that.

I wish these people luck with their libel suit against the government.

Re:This raises an interesting question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227056)

That is very sad. But unfortunately true.

Well, at least now the government can arrest them for about to be terrorists. Its a self fulfilling prophecy after all.

Accuse 84000 people/companies of being pedophiles, ruin 84000 lives, and create at least 84000 people who have nothing at all to lose.
If even 1% of those people with ruined lives and nothing to lose decide they no longer wish to live in the hell the government created for them and they may as well take as many of them down with them, suicide bomber style... Well of course the government would never ever admit (or even realize most likely) they are directly responsible for that act. Instead, the poor poor helpless government will complain how they were attacked for no reason what so ever.

Makes one almost think that maybe the terrorists are on the good guys team, and we deserve what we get.

Re:This raises an interesting question... (5, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227030)

The followup question is more important: how many people will be willing to believe that it was all a mistake, as opposed to simply assuming that if the government calls someone a pedophile that person should be treated like the devil incarnate? People who are accused of anything related to child pornography can find their reputations tarnished years later, even if they are acquitted or if the charges are dropped. No rational thought it applied once the magic words are spoken.

Incompetence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226670)

It's ok though, we should totally trust the government with more power over the internet.

I think what disturbs me isn't the intent (which was good), but the incredible screw up.

Re:Incompetence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226762)

At least they were seizing domains by the book this time. Unfortunately they screwed up in the process.

Re:Incompetence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226962)

I think what disturbs me isn't the intent (which was good), but the incredible screw up.

What disturbs me is the capability. The distinction between error and bad-intent is kind of irrelevant. If tens of thousands of domains can be taken out like that, then DNS is weak and needs to be fixed.

It's not like they approached tens of thousands of sysadmins, showed each of them a court order, and then all those sysadmins said, "Well,I guess I have to..." But it is necessary that such clumsiness exist in the system, and this demonstrates that it isn't there.

Don't Worry (0)

zixxt (1547061) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226678)

This was for your own protection fellow Americans, the greater good was served and no harm was done, also think of the children! Any mistakes done in our mission to save you from yourselves is not our faults.

due process (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226720)

Yet another illegal seizure without any due process whatsoever.

Can... (3, Interesting)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226722)

These people sue the government for loss of access and libel?

Or is it just one of those oopsie moments which will never be resolved?

Re:Can... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226796)

Can they sue? Sure... You can sue anyone for anything.

The real question is... Can they win? And that's a big hell no. No fucking way. You're dreaming.

You can't afford justice when you go up aginst the goverment.

Re:Can... (1)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227002)

Actually, I'm not sure you can sue the government

Re:Can... (2)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227132)

Governments (in the US) have sovereign immunity, so you can only sue them if they choose to let you.

Re:Can... (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227344)

    You can sue anyone you want. And they can be kind enough to return the favor.

    ... v. United States [google.com] (15,100,000)

    United States v. ... [google.com] (7,850,000)

    The question isn't if you'll win or not. The question is, can you afford it?

    There's a pretty well established procedure for dealing with lawsuits. He with the largest budget, who can drag the case on for the longest time, wins. It gets tougher when the folks you're trying to sue are also the ones collecting taxes, printing money, and own the intelligence and law enforcement community. You'll see in corporate lawsuits, it isn't typically a game to win or lose. The courts are used as a tool to force a settlement. Look at the RIAA/MPAA methodology. On vague or circumstantial evidence, people will be dragged into court, and allowed to settle for some outrageous sum.

    In the case of "insertwackynamehere v United States", you may find that before you ever make it to trial, a few things may happen. The IRS may auditing you. The local code enforcement may finding that your home is unsafe to live in. The DMV may revoke your drivers license due to an unresolvable "computer error". You may find yourself unemployed for no real good reason. Your bank accounts and credit cards may be frozen for a whole variety of reason. You may find yourself on the "no-fly" list, and your passport flagged. You may be investigated for a whole other string of crimes. Did you ever download copyrighted materials illegally (by law, not by morals). Do you have receipts for everything in your home? If you can't prove you own it, you can't prove it wasn't stolen. As I've heard many times, if you look carefully enough at anyone, you will find some obscure law they broke.

    On the other hand, everything may go nicely, and you may win. After a few years in court, you may be awarded your actual monetary losses. Most likely, if you won, you would be awarded reimbursement for the fees paid to the DNS provider and domain registrar for the period that your domain was seized. What's that work out to be? About $2?

Re:Can... (2)

zill (1690130) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227086)

Unfortunately the federal government has sovereign immunity in cases like this.

Let's just forget (1)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226724)

...the fact that they've done damage to all those websites of businesses...im sure potential customers aren't at all put off seeing that domain seizure image.

Re:Let's just forget (1)

Fnord666 (889225) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226938)

...the fact that they've done damage to all those websites of businesses...im sure potential customers aren't at all put off seeing that domain seizure image.

If you're running your business' web presence through freeDNS, you have bigger issues than this my friend.

Re:Let's just forget (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227236)

...the fact that they've done damage to all those websites of businesses...im sure potential customers aren't at all put off seeing that domain seizure image.

If you're running your business' web presence through freeDNS, you have bigger issues than this my friend.

Like what? Being labeled a pedophile seems kind of a Big Problem in today's world.

PS. In the past I've used free DNS services as backup DNS. Nothing is worse than your DNS going offline and suddenly bouncing emails because there is no proper backup.

Re:Let's just forget (4, Interesting)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227246)

...the fact that they've done damage to all those websites of businesses...im sure potential customers aren't at all put off seeing that domain seizure image.

If you're running your business' web presence through freeDNS, you have bigger issues than this my friend.

Come again? Care to elaborate? I might be dense today, I can't imagine what issues an organisation may have, issue bigger than to be falsely painted as a child abuser in public?

Any NGO which is happy to save every dime in costs and use that dime for the goals of the NGO has suddenly "bigger issues", eh? Yes, I can see they do have issues, except that the issue is not caused by them, but by incompetence...

What's scarier: the issue was caused by the active incompetence of those in power.
Even more, this also reveals there are not enough checks in the system to prevent such actions, no matter the cause/intent: incompetence, malice or corruption.

Re:Let's just forget (5, Insightful)

mywhitewolf (1923488) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227158)

and since when was it ok for the government to put a sign on a front door of a shop saying "closed due to pedophile investigation"

No Worries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226732)

Once the big bad government "accidently" shuts down Google, instead of some hapless defenseless sites that can't afford a lawyer, then there will be hell to pay.

Re:No Worries (1)

Sean_Inconsequential (1883900) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226888)

:s/Google/Facebook and Farmville/

Fixed it for you.

Re:No Worries (1)

sstamps (39313) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227042)

That would be a public service.

Why ICE/Homeland Security (4, Insightful)

Ksevio (865461) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226738)

Can someone remind me again why this falls under the jurisdiction of ICE/Homeland Security?

Are child pornographers planning on invading the US or something?

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

CookieForYou (1945108) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226790)

Because, other than the CIA, they are probably the only ones who's internal policies allow jurisdiction over sites that may have absolutely no presence or activity inside the USA, other than the fact that the Internets are basically based here. The FBI has no jurisdiction for sites hosted overseas, nor for foreign citizens, even if their DNS entry points to godaddy.

Maybe I'm wrong.

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

Cosgrach (1737088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226958)

Seriously, What the fuck does counterfeit goods and child porn have to do with the DHS?

No, really.

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (2, Informative)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226988)

What the fuck does counterfeit goods and child porn have to do with the DHS?

ICE is a part of DHS. You do understand what the "C" stands for, right? Right?

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

wygit (696674) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227092)

Customs.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

so once again... what does that have to do with child porn?
or websites?

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (4, Informative)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227192)

People who smuggle in and fraudulently sell counterfeit goods are exactly their area of authority. It's true if the scammers sell the goods out the back of a van, and it's true if they sell them using an ad in the back of a magazine, and it's true if they use a web site. Siezing the web site isn't any different than siezing the warehouse where they stack up the counterfeit goods.

The child porn stuff is also their turf if those "services" are being sold from over the border. And of course, most of those operations are based overseas, taking credit cards from domestic (US) customers. If the sites are registered within reach of US law enforcement, those registrations are fair game, just like the warehouse full of fake Nike products.

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

wygit (696674) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227286)

There are a whooooooole bunch of "if"s in that statement, big guy.
And who said anything about smuggling?

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227010)

The Bush administration was attempting to cut non-business-friendly departments and began to broadly define "homeland security". For example, the FDA was placed under DHS so that funding could be curtailed without the administration looking bad to the general public. So if you can think of any way to stretch the definitions then it is fair game. "One child is part of the homeland and he needs some security."

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227026)

ICE stands for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Now, perhaps the current media climate has made "Immigration" into a cause celebré, but there was time when US Customs was so prestigious a sinecure that it employed famous writers like Nathaniel Hawthorne.

Re:Why ICE/Homeland Security (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227362)

I believe the argument is that trading in illegal merchandise is used to move cash, to evade normal channels. I'm not agreeing with the logic though.

DHS chief operations officer Hicks (1)

Spice Consumer (1367497) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226744)

"I saw we dust off and nuke 'em for orbit."

"But sir... It's just ten sites! That could take out over 84,000!"

"It's the only way to be sure. Think of the children."

I'm shocked. No, really. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226746)

So, tell me again how it's a good thing for the FCC to have control?

Re:I'm shocked. No, really. (1)

tysonedwards (969693) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227080)

Yeah... Roosevelt was a prick for thinking of putting the Federal Communications Commission in charge of communications instead of some faceless corporation... We should just leave it with the Department of Homeland Security; they are doing such an awesome job right now.

Send em a bill via lawsuite (1)

russg (64596) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226752)

I'd say that anyone wrongly losing revenue should pursue recourse for that issue. I work with very larger organizations and in many cases a loss of service is a "billable" offense. Obviously the provider in this case was not at fault. I'm not a fan of lawsuits but this is the type of case that should be taken up. It is these big brother activities that lawsuits are good at handling but I'm sure DHS is protected as made men and all that.

DNS TTLs cause a small oops to become a long and painful oops that doesn't readily clear itself up due to DNS servers around not obeying the TTL and flushing on time.

I really don't know why this ticks me off so much but it does.

so they just shut down a big block to get 1 site? (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226764)

so they just shut down a big block to get 1 site?

seems like they are going for the Shotgun way of taking sites down.

Shotgun approach (3, Funny)

Local ID10T (790134) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226780)

"Tis far nobler that 84,000 innocent websites be taken down than 10 potential violators go free..."

er wait, that's not the quote... oh well too late for your site!

Yet another eason (3, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226802)

tog et rid of DHS. It's a stupid extra layer of management put there by someone who thinks problems are fixed with more management.

defund them, give the funds to the agencies them selves.
DHS has done nothing but blunder everything it touches.

With every agency I an think of, I can list a HUGE number of success to a very tiny number of failures, but not DHS.

Twads.

Re:Yet another eason (0)

PRMan (959735) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226818)

Apparently you're not familiar with the FDA.

If a malicious hacker DoS's your servers... (1)

DataDiddler (1994180) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226804)

... he's liable for the loss of business. I wonder if the DHS will make restitution for its denial of service. Free T-shirts with the DHS logo for all affected!

Re:If a malicious hacker DoS's your servers... (1)

BigSlowTarget (325940) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227218)

I'm guessing Sovereign Immunity says no you get nothing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sovereign_immunity_in_the_United_States

Gov't Blunder News Spreads Like Wild Fire (3, Insightful)

eepok (545733) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226808)

... so come out with it immediately, fess up, apologize, and make a vocal effort to prevent such an error from being made in the future... AND THEN brag about your success.

Always admit your failures and shortcomings first that way it doesn't look like you're hiding them. This is A+, #1 advice for PR in the digital world.

and it's free!

It's time to develop our DNS system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35226824)

We need a decentralized DNS system, like bit torrent but for DNS. Every user of the internet could have a cache of the DNS entry and remove the monopoly of the ICANN

Re:It's time to develop our DNS system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227338)

After all, we trust all other users on the Internet to give us valid DNS information. What could possibly go wrong?

Admitting Fault? (1, Offtopic)

MoldySpore (1280634) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226834)

The US Government? As of late, that has become a sort of pipe dream. We have revolutions and protests happening to try and secure more democratic ideals and oust the dictatorships and autocracies in Egypt, Iran, and several other prominent Arab/Muslim countries and states, but here in the US we are seizing innocent people's web sites and then pretending it didn't happen, enacting legislation that singles out groups of people by racial profiling them [newsweek.com] , have senators and governors trying to repeal health care reform [huffingtonpost.com] , and are trying to find ways to change our laws and/or constitution to prohibit the free press and make it so they can't leak sensitive information anymore without facing jail time and possible treason charges, while we still have a "secret" government prison open at Guantanamo Bay holding prisoners against their will with no charges or due process, one of which died recently [eurasiareview.com] after 9 years of captivity, while we hold Bradley Manning in solitary confinement, possibly torturing him [change.org] because he saw something wrong and decided it was horrible enough that the PEOPLE needed to know about it.

Where the fuck do I live again?

Re:Admitting Fault? (0)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227112)

Who said the following about Health Care Reform?

If a mandate was the solution, we can try that to solve homelessness by mandating everybody to buy a house

Whoever it was was right. We're just following his logic.

Re:Admitting Fault? (2)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227302)

Where the fuck do I live again?

In the "land of the home and free of the brave".

The Government doesn't care about "blunders" (1)

geekmux (1040042) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226850)

"...the DHS praised themselves for taking down those ten websites, but completely failed to acknowledge their massive blunder."

Well, let's see, we could theorize as to why they failed to acknowledge this, but I think I'm gonna go with my tried and true theory instead:

They could give a flying fuck, because they answer to no one.

Yup, that pretty much sums it up.

Re:The Government doesn't care about "blunders" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227036)

>They could give a flying fuck, because they answer to no one.

So you're saying that they did care because they answer to no one? That doesn't make much sense.

I think you meant "they couldn't give a flying fuck". It's amazing how many people make that mistake, when if they simply looked at the sentence they should realise it's not what they meant.

Re:The Government doesn't care about "blunders" (1)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227272)

A flying fuck is defined as zero, so it is the same either way, by the property of additive identity. (care+flyingfuck=care+(0)=0 AND care-flyingfuck=care-(0)=care) Since no care was give to begin with, it is zero, and thus correct, either way.

"My Life in the Bush of Ghosts" answer ... (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226876)

Well, if they flubbed up, they should at least have the balls to admit it, and not try to sweep it under the rug. Because the story will get out there anyway. It reminds me of this:

VOICE: Inflamed caller and smooth politician replying, both unidentified. Radio call-in show, New York, July 1979:

What're you saying? He said "I'm sorry, I committed a sin, I made a mistake. I asked (?????) to forgive me... please forgive me." He said "Mea Culpa," can you put it better? "I'm saying I'm sorry, I made a mistake, I made... I committed a sin, I made a mistake. And I'm never gonna do it again, I never did it before and I'm never gonna do it again."

Is anyone else disturbed? (2)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226896)

Is anyone else disturbed that the Department of Homeland Security can take down websites? Isn't that outside of their scope? They are supposed to protect us from outside threats like terrorism or attack, not child porn. Thats FBI territory I would think.

Redirect? (4, Insightful)

pokyo (1987720) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226924)

So what is the point of redirecting to that fear mongering image? Is it to educate people who happen to not know that child pornography is bad? This blunder wouldn't have been nearly as damaging to innocent people if it was just their site being unreachable, but no, instead they are openly accused of being pedophiles.

Re:Redirect? (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227078)

Well, you know, if they did not do that, they would have to wait until the conclusion of a trial before they could demonize people. This makes things a whole lot easier.

Try this on CHASE.COM (1)

bfmorgan (839462) | more than 3 years ago | (#35226998)

I would like to see what happens when DHS cast its next take down and happens to snap CHASE.COM or some other big institution.

presume victimhood (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227022)

After this, I figure the only safe assumption when I see someone accused of child molestation or possessing kiddie porn, is that they are innocent.

They were just testing the kill switch. (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227054)

n/t

Operation Save Our Children (1)

donotlizard (1260586) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227148)

That's so gay.

You don't "shut down" websites... (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227164)

...by blocking DNS. If you have the website address and a decent DNS cache/mirror, the website is still working. Right now governments think that you shut down a website by removing DNS entries, but on a news for nerds weblog, we should know better than that, shan't we ?

Hey, it works in Afghanistan (2)

straponego (521991) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227182)

If we have to punish 8400 innocents to get just one alleged criminal, it's all worthwhile. You don't agree? Why are you supporting child molesters (terrorists)?

I mean, what's the alternative, go through the courts? Some of those bastard judges like to see evidence!

but.. (0)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227216)

Hey, I'm just glad Obama's president and all this stuff has come to an end. No wait...

Just a Reminder (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227240)

This violation of due process was brought to you by the Obama Adminstration. He's a DemocRat, in case you've forgotten.

SO how's that Hopey Changey thing workin' for ya?

.

Re:Just a Reminder (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227392)

He's standing on the shoulders of giants. Like that Bush guy who brought us the ill-named Patriot Act that really laid the groundwork for this kind of BS. Also, I believe that the Department of Homeschooled Security was his too. Might as well give credit where credit is due.

Compensation? Lawsuit? (1)

sdguero (1112795) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227248)

Whats to stop a class action lawsuit after this?

Hypocrits (1)

CRobin (20777) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227346)

Wow, with all the shit we keep hearing about turning off the internet in Egypt...It seems we are not far behind, this sounds pretty damn close to me, just a typo away. Alright this is DNS, not the internet/IP but how many of us know the IPs of sites or worse how many of the 'others' out there know even know what an IP is, DNS might as well be the internet.

Oops! (2)

presspass (1770650) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227356)

Nice to know there's an online version of "Sorry 'bout shooting your dog/son/daughter, we got the wrong house".

Then again, I don't remember any apologies in real life.

--
pass

Wowzers! (0)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35227358)

84,000 websites! And how many of those websites were actually even remotely popular? How many times did someone *actually* try to navigate to one of these sites and end up with the ICE notice? TFA doesn't mention any specifics...makes me doubt that anyone was seriously affected in this. Yes, I know, this is /. and I'm supposed to hate the USA for messing up again...but I'm just not convinced that this is a big deal.

Re:Wowzers! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35227404)

And how many of those websites were actually even remotely popular? How many times did someone *actually* try to navigate to one of these sites and end up with the ICE notice?

That doesn't matter in the least. Violations of free speech, even accidental, are not acceptable just because the victims are not popular. Shutting down the local newspaper of Bumfuck, AR is just as bad as shutting down the New York Times.

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