EU Looks To Diffuse Internet Bomb Instructions

    September 13, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

When I was in the tenth grade, before anybody’d heard of the Internet except this geek buddy of mine and the geek buddies of his that he connected with like Matthew Broderick did in that movie by plugging his phone into this contraption (this buddy of mine now works for the NSA by the way), my geek-of-all-geeks friend showed me instructions on how to build a nuclear bomb.

I was mildly entertained and suggested we hit Subway before Ravi finished his shift (he always gave us free cookies), never imagining this Internet thing my geek buddy liked so much would even approach the popularity of Dungeons and Dragons, which, obviously, caused depressed geeks to kill themselves.

(Perhaps if he’d shown me you could find naked girls on there I might have made more positive predictions for it. It wouldn’t be until we were college roommates that he introduced me to the World Wide Web of Nudity.)

Anyway, the European Union is quite aware of the availability of bomb-making instructions on the Web and is looking into ways to put a stop to it. Just how they’ll do that is unclear, but they’re having meetings, and we all know that when bureaucrats start having meetings then things are about to happen.

ArsTechnica reports that the EU is considering a ban on using the Internet to distribute bomb-making instructions. Officials cite recent terrorism scares in Europe as reason enough to justify it.

EU security commissioner Franco Frattini suggests an EU explosives database, maintained by Europol, with links to member states as an early warning system for when explosives have been stolen or "a new terrorist modus operandi is discovered from credible intelligence informations."

What that has to with the Internet, and who gave him the right make the word "information" plural with an "s" is unclear, as is the exact criteria for what constitutes "bomb-making instructions," who has rights to such information, for what reasons, why the information couldn’t be found in books, how basic chemistry websites would be protected, how the measures would apply to states outside of the EU, or how it helps anything at all.

You could read the presentation by Frattini at the Europa website, but I doubt it’ll do you much good. In the mean time, expect more fruitless government efforts and lots of information out there they’d rather you didn’t have.