U.S. Contemplates Wiretapping the Internet

According to the New York Times, the Obama administration plans to introduce a bill that requires all services that enable communications, such as email, social networking sites and peer to peer messaging services, to comply with a wiretap order, including intercepting and unscrambling encrypted messages. These services include Blackberry devices, Facebook, MySpace and Skype. Such a bill raises concerns over our security needs versus privacy protection. Government officials maintain such steps are necessary to protect the public safety and national security, as current technology poses a challenge to the government’s ability to conduct surveillance. If the bill is passed, it would require communication services, peer-to-peer communications and other designated providers to redevelop their services to allow interception and unscrambling of data. Advocates against the bill argue that the interception capability for the government could actually allow hackers to take advantage of the wiretap functions. The ability to wiretap the internet and social media would make it easier for the government to monitor injured workers. To voice concerns or comments on this bill, visit our blog.