Cyber threats to the US have become increasingly common and even more dangerous than the potential threat they seemed to pose in the past. Terrorist organisations such as Al Qaeda have already attempted widespread disruption to the US’s cyber networks and many internet users are haunted by scams and frauds and even phishing attempts on a daily basis. The internet, while no longer obsolete, has become a breeding ground for suspicious and often illegal activity.
The FBI have realised the concerns that they, the government of the United States and the people of the country have about these issues and see that they need to be resolved. They have recently called out to the government for more funding towards the prevention of such attacks through cyber security. The department being rather underfunded means that it cannot do a lot of the things it wishes to do to protect people’s families and the United States government as a whole. They have called out for the government to allow them an extra forty million dollars in the next budget, which seems like a lot to pay for cyber security but the FBI believe that it must be done to protect the internet. However, if this scheme is funded, it could also potentially cause the downfall of other internet related items.
The FBI calling out for more cyber security is all well and good in principal, but what will they be actually using the money for? It seems that the FBI wish to be able to hack into people’s computers to see if they are committing any online offences and hack into websites to see which users could possibly be doing illegal things. While this may protect the odd person and may have the right intentions behind it, it is a complete invasion of the citizens of the United States’ privacy and is doing exactly the opposite of providing them security.
The FBI however claim that what they would be doing would be not only legal but completely necessary. They claim that people’s rights will not be infringed on and that what they would be doing would not harm any innocent bystanders. However, the FBI being able to hack into your computer and view all of your web browsing and internet history could be potentially harmful and even if it were not harmful it would be incredibly invasive. With this extra money, the FB would also be able to use phones, social media and computers to access criminals and immoral behaviour as well as completely innocent people’s work and daily lives to a greater extent than they possibly already do.
While the FBI being able to catch some criminals early before they do much cyber crime and money going to help increase the US’s cyber security should benefit us all in the long run, would the money really be spent wisely? That the FBI seem unable to convince the general public on. Luckily, the motion will not have to seek approval until the next budget next year.