Internet kill switch for the president? Bill may advance possibility

Kill switch for internet in the President's hands?
Kill switch for internet in the President's hands?

A proposed cyber-security bill is stoking fears over the creation of a presidential "Internet kill switch." The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee unanimously approved the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010 (S. 3480), which now moves to the Senate floor for a full vote.

The bill, PCMag.com reports, calls for the creation of an office of cyberspace policy within the White House as well as a new arm of the Homeland Security Department to oversee cyber-security policies.

But the bill's most eye-catching provision grants the president the power to "authorize emergency measures to protect the nation's most critical infrastructure if a cyber vulnerability is being exploited or is about to be exploited."