Big Brother Claims Legal Authority To Take Down Any Website

The US government says that it may legally seize any domain ending in .com, .net, and other popular top-level domains digitaltrends.com

If your domain ends in .com, the United States government says it has the right to seize it from your control, reports Wired. The same goes for any URL that ends in .net, .cc, .tv, .name, and .org.

This troubling declaration of power comes after US authorities shutdown the online sports gambling site Bodog.com last week — even though the website was owned by a Canadian company, which many assumed put it outside of US jurisdiction. Not so, apparently. That’s because the only company allowed to issue new .com domains is VeriSign, which is based — you guessed it — in the US.

According to a spokesperson for the department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), anytime the US government wants to take down a .com, .net, .tv, or .name domain, all it has to do is issue a court order to VeriSign, which quickly complies. The same process applies to the Public Interest Registry, which controls the .org top-level domain.

There a few reasons this brazen flaunting of power is troubling. First, it suggests that the federal government plans to impose its authority on a wider swath of the Web. Second, it shows that while the Internet is a global service, it is still at the mercy of the US government and US law. Online gambling, for instance, isn’t illegal in all countries that have Internet access. And yet Bodog was shut down simply because US citizens could access it.
Who needs ACTA or PIPA or SOPA? said the beast...fyi

There is another thing to take note of here. Bodog, the online gambling company that had their site taken down, was a Canadian company. Although few are aware, with the recent signing of the "Beyond the Border" agreement, the fact is that the U.S. and Canada have now been practically merged into a global based regional-management cooperative; see:
US-Canada "Beyond The Border" Details Coming Out: Total Integration, Total Surveillance, Global Collaboration 2-22-12

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