Feeds

McCain wants child porn rules for US message boards

Social networking sites too

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Social networking sites and message boards face the same regulatory burden as internet service providers (ISPs) in a new bill proposed by ex-US presidential candidate John McCain. McCain wants sites to report all child pornography to authorities.

Currently only ISPs have a duty to report suspected child pornography-related activity to the US National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. McCain's bill, though, extends that duty to social networking sites, and to all sites that carry message boards.

McCain's proposed law is mainly aimed at sex offenders, but contains the demands on social networking sites within it. It says that site operators who know of any activity relating to child pornography must "make a report of such facts or circumstances to the CyberTipline of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children."

McCain's proposed law says that it applies to any "social networking site, chat room, message board, or any other similar service using the internet."

The proposed law has been read twice by the Senate and must now be referred to a committee for discussion. It says that convicted sex offenders in the US will have to register their online identities with the authorities if new laws being proposed are passed.

If the bill became law it would create a significant extra regulatory burden on many sites, since a wide variety and large number of sites host message boards. The law would likely carry heavy penalties for site operators who did not notify authorities when offending material was posted.

Amidst fears that social networking sites have made it easier for sexual predators to target young people, McCain has also proposed in his law that sex offenders identify all their online aliases to authorities.

McCain last week introduced a proposal for his bill, Stop The Online Exploitation Of Our Children Act, which orders that convicted sex offenders register all email addresses, instant messaging names and chat room names so that they could be identified online. McCain proposed a 10 year jail sentence for those who fail to do so.

The biggest social networking site MySpace last week said that it would ban sex offenders from signing up to the site. This would, though, depend on a system of registration of digital identities such as that proposed by McCain.

The state of Virginia has also proposed a similar law. Attorney General Bob McDonnell backs the plan. "We require all sex offenders to register their physical and mailing addresses in Virginia, but in the 21st century, it is just as critical that they register any email addresses or IM screen names," he said. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it
Go ahead, you're all clear, kid... Sorry, wrong film
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
Forget Hillary, HP's ex CARLY FIORINA 'wants to be next US Prez'
Former CEO has political ambitions again, according to Washington DC sources
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Driving business with continuous operational intelligence
Introducing an innovative approach offered by ExtraHop for producing continuous operational intelligence.