Should the public police the Internet?
Governments, private security companies and law enforcement agencies all play a part in tackling cyber-crime.
But author and academic Jonathan Zittrain argues that we should be wary of “locking down” the Internet with increasing amounts of centralised rules and sealed gadgets that can’t be tinkered with.
We don’t have police on every street corner in the real world, so why have that online, he asks?
People should be encouraged to see themselves as “netizens” — active participants in the online world, rather than passive consumers of Internet content.
They could share the load of policing the net, reporting threats and working together to combat the risks.
He says Wikipedia has shown that online collaboration can work.
“The challenge to the technologists is to build technologies to let people of good faith help without having to devote their lives to it,” he says.
Supporters say it’s just common sense, while at least one critic has described the approach as “utopian”. Who do you think should shoulder the burden of Internet security?