Wednesday, September 24, 2008

State AGs Push Online Child Safety Snake Oil

Chris Soghoian writes on the C|Net "surveill@nce st@te" Blog:

Attorneys general from a number of states have given their support to a collection of weak and ineffective age verification technologies, all of which aim to protect children on the Internet. At a meeting of the Internet Safety Technical Task Force at Harvard University on Tuesday, the consensus seemed to be that while none of the technologies actually work, doing anything at all was better than nothing. Simply put, no one wants to be blamed for inaction against online child predators.

Kicking off the meeting, Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut attorney general, summed up the general expectation of the other 48 state attorneys general involved in the effort: "If we can put a man on the moon, we can make the Internet safe (for children)." Unfortunately, while the federal government sunk billions of R&D dollars into NASA's space efforts, the AGs have yet to cough up any research funds, and seem to expect industry to come up with their own solutions.

More here.


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