Can the president shut down the internet? – SC Magazine US
A revision to the Cybersecurity Act of 2009, the proposed Rockefeller-Snowe legislation in Congress, has drawn criticism because of concerns that it would give the president power to shut down the internet.
SANS EDITOR’S NOTE
Proposed legislation introduced in April gave the President the power to "declare a cybersecurity emergency and order the limitation or shutdown of internet traffic to and from a compromised federal government or critical infrastructure information system or network."
Despite concern from Internet companies and civil liberties groups about the power granted, a revised version of the bill still grants the President the power to take control of information systems, but the new language is even more vague. The revised bill also proposes establishing a federal cyber security professional certification program and require that only people with the certification be permitted to manage certain private system networks.
"There is actually only one sentence about "shutting down" the Internet in the draft bill – if sanity prevails that will get X-ed out. The language requiring the Department of Commerce to set up a licensing and certification program for cybersecurity professionals also needs similar delete key activity. The rest of the bill actually has some good ideas but lots of pork barrel projects, too."