Skip to main content

Anonymous Calls for Internet Blackout Protesting CISPA

Those following the news regularly will know that the highly debated Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) has once again made it through the House of Representatives late last week. In the aftermath, known hacker and freedom activist group Anonymous are encouraging an Internet Blackout Day in the hopes of raising awareness.

A similar outcry for public awareness of CISPA took place in January of 2012, when websites were either replace or altered by messages explaining how dangerous this clause is for online security and freedom. Some of the most influential websites took part, such as Google, Wikipedia, Reddit, Mozilla, and 7000 more websites, which culminated is the Protect IP Act being scrubbed (remember "Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act", or just PIPA?) as well as SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act).

The group with the Guy Fawkes masks have started to encourage websites to take action again against CISPA by blocking their sites, explaining why they are down, and encouraging other site owners to follow suit. The hacktivist organization believe that the internet should not be controlled by any one, and that information and access to should be free and unconstrained. However, those in favour of the bill are of the belief that by having legal control over the internet, they can have direct routes to dangerous individuals without warrants, at the cost of privacy and data protection laws, and  by extension, the fourth amendment.

As the act does not specify exactly what type and class of data pertains to cyber intelligence, it could give law enforcement agencies the power to turn popular public and private sharing websites into what you see in the picture below. We urge you contact your local senator or representative and make your own opinion heard, so that this can be decided upon as democratically as possible.

Tom's Hardware is the leading destination for hardcore computer enthusiasts. We cover everything from processors to 3D printers, single-board computers, SSDs and high-end gaming rigs, empowering readers to make the most of the tech they love, keep up on the latest developments and buy the right gear.

  • adgjlsfhk
    seems familiar, might be because this is exactly the same as sopa, and all the other attempts to secretly get rid of our internet freedom.
    Reply
  • ojas
    Surprised Tom's isn't protesting time, nor is Wikipedia or any of the others.
    Reply
  • borisof007
    Thank you Toms for making the matter very public, explaining the graveness of the potential fallouts, but for NOT pushing anyone to vote either way. Not that I wouldn't oppose CISPA, but it's nice to see you respect others' opinions : )
    Reply
  • borisof007
    Thank you Toms for making the matter very public, explaining the graveness of the potential fallouts, but for NOT pushing anyone to vote either way. Not that I wouldn't oppose CISPA, but it's nice to see you respect others' opinions : )
    Reply
  • Dupontrocks11
    This is an anonymous I like. Promote change with civil disobedience, not fire. But honestly, this wouldn't happen if we didn't vote these people into office! Politics are important every once in a while people!
    Reply
  • captjack5169
    The Internet is the only thing the govt can't control. They want to total control of the information highway because then they can control what you know about, just like it was before the internet came to be.
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    We have a bad job and economic situation, and our idiots in DC focus on this, and other unimportant distractions?
    Reply
  • skit75
    Handy link if you care to see how your representative voted or, if you care to see the actual bill. http://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/113-2013/h117
    Reply
  • kinggraves
    Except this year they aren't worried about getting reelected, so they'll vote for whomever bribes them the most. Same reason gun control acts are being shot down despite the fact they were popular with actual citizens. NRA, the media industries, all of them pay senators far more than you do. Won't vote them in next term? What makes you think the other guy will be any different?
    Reply
  • jerm1027
    10702416 said:
    This is an anonymous I like. Promote change with civil disobedience, not fire. But honestly, this wouldn't happen if we didn't vote these people into office! Politics are important every once in a while people!

    Well, I suppose that's part of the issue, but I think it goes much deeper. For one, some of the politicians are very charismatic (Obama), so unless you're an avid follower of politics, it's quite easy to get caught in their lies. But I think the biggest issue is that the politicians don't work for us - large corporations are signing their checks, not the people they are suppose to represent. We need to get money out of politics. Our government is just about 100% corrupt, and unless you're voting independent, both parties are the same, and the choices you get are usually something like voting between cow shit and horse shit. At the end of the day, both parties are shit.

    If campaigns were funded by tax dollars, it would give politicians less incentive to do corporate favors, and it would give independent parties a fair chance. In short, if the politicians don't listen to our demands, we can actually vote for someone who will.
    Reply