The State of the Union address and the new tech laws

So I know on the last The Tek episode, Wendell and Logan both talked quite a bit about new laws in the tech world, like about net neutrality and also the new hacking law. And then last night in the state of the union address the president was talking about combating hacking with the same efforts used against terrorism (because we all know the NSA is always the answer).

So I was curious what the rest of the world thinks about all that. As far as net neutrality, I don't entirely agree with what they were saying, I don't think there should be a minimum speed required. Really I think the only rule the government should make is that all traffic is equal, I'm afraid if they step in and start controlling speeds it'll destroy the competition and there will be 2-3 monopolies again in a few years, because none of the small ISPs will be able to compete until they run better infrastructure.


Great, so if they get a law passed that gives them the authority to treat "hacking" like terrorism then we are REALLY fucked.

Here in modern America, you don't control democracy, democracy controls you!

But yes I am pretty worried about the hacking bill. I read that you wouldn't be able to do it even to your own network, so there goes penetration testing jobs. I feel sorry for future computer users...

Hmm, banning pen-testing to combat cyber-crime.

Because that's not counter-intuitive! LOL #Merica

Even if pen testing is banned for your own network. Who the hell cares, still gonna do it. 

Oh and while we're at it, let's say the minimum ISP speed is 25mbps down! That way we can put all the small ISPs with junky infrastructure out of business and keep the money in Comcast and Verizon's pocket!

I'm pretty concerned about this, as I plan to work as a pen tester after college. I think one of the most disgusting aspects of the proposals (at least from the 2012 Reid omnibus cyber security bill) however is including cyber crimes in RICO. If this change is made, then for instance, if a person who was busted for participating in a DDOS with anonymous, they could be charged with any and all cyber crimes committed by other members of anonymous, even if they had absolutely nothing to do with the attacks.

Here's a very specific example. Barrett Brown is scheduled to be sentenced today. He was originally charged with a whole host of bullshit which would have set a precedent criminalizing link sharing, and he could have been sentenced to like a fucking century in prison. He pled guilty to lesser charges to take a plea deal. The thing is, if cyber crimes would have been included in RICO, Barrett Brown could have been charged with Jeremy Hammond's crimes, which is so insidious because Brown merely covered Hammond and LulzSec's hacking activities as a journalist.


This is so disgusting it's unfathomable to me. People who are associated with other people who commit crimes are not the ones committing those crimes. RICO is a fucking stain.

If this goes bad, forget pen testing, it could make criminals out of regular employees that don't have explicit permission to install software on their company's machines.

"Did you have explicit permission to install firefox on your company computer?"

"Well no, but ..."