WASHINGTON — The FBI, in aided in its investigation by the NSA and DEA, today issued 38 subpoenas to Internet-related companies and individuals, sources report.
The full list includes Netscape, AOL, eBay, Yahoo!, Lycos, GeoCities, HotMail, Tim Berners-Lee, and Marc Andreessen.
FBI Director Robert Mueller issued the following statement: “If the Internet remains a virtual Wild West for narcotraffickers and other criminals, that would not only threaten our country’s national security, but also the very existence of the Internet industry as a legitimate business enterprise.”
Indeed, experts have speculated on the possibility of Internet applications that aid terrorists and put at risk our national security interests.
“Suppose maps become digitized and freely available on the Internet” says a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security. “Suddenly, terrorists have access to military grade technology for selecting, scoping, and planning their attacks. Citizens will be helpless. Access to such tools must be strictly controlled”
Technologies to send mail electronically, dubbed “e-mail,” have also raised concerns. Experts predict that this tool will be exploited by pedophiles around the world to distribute child pornography. “Regulation of E-mail is our top priority” says Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe. “We have made it our goal to ensure that every E-mail sent is tracked and stored. This database will be made accessible to law enforcement officials around the country, to ensure our nations safety.”
Cyber-anarchists, who oppose regulation of the Internet, have pushed forward the dangerous concept of “net-neutrality.” This idea has been denounced by spokesmen for the movie, music, radio, newspaper, book, magazine, advertising, television, and sports industries: “It will destroy jobs, plain and simple. Net-neutrality is nothing more than a ploy to subvert and destroy our time tested business models.”
Not all in the industry oppose regulation, however. Says Cisco CEO John Chambers: “Regulation is a sign that the Internet is reaching mainstream acceptance, which is why we are partnering with the NSA to install hardware based tracking on all our routers. Such moves can only bring legitimacy to the Internet.”
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