Tuesday, February 20, 2001

CNN.com - Technology - Hackers deemed terrorists under new U.K. law - February 20, 2001

Sigh. The malicious stereotyping continues unabated.

A spokesman is quoted in the news story as saying, "There isn't a specific section that deals with cybercrime as such, it is covered within the various sections, but anyone who seriously interferes with, or seriously disrupts an electronic system will be dealt with under the anti-terrorism law."
Well, what does that mean? Can they be specific? This sure sounds to me like a one-size-fits-all law that the U.K. government can manipulate at will. Will they decide that using a copy of DeCSS, the DVD de-encryption software, is an act of terrorism? How about Napster users? Hey, I accidentally dropped a big magnet on my Nintendo - am I in trouble?
According to the news story, the U.K. police now have the authority to determine what they deem to be 'violent' (in computer terms). Advice to Britons on the 'net: avoid writing any flame e-mails or making jokes about getting rid of people you don't like. You may end up in prison, or worse: France!


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