In response to Saturday’s terror attack in London, Prime Minister Theresa May addressed the public, stating that the internet now needs to be regulated in an effort to “deprive the extremists of their safe spaces online.”
Speaking from London’s Downing Street, May said, “We cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breed – yet that is precisely what the internet, and the big companies that provide internet-based services provide. We need to work with allies democratic governments to reach international agreements to regulate cyberspace to prevent the spread of extremist and terrorism planning.”
Stating that her country has been “too tolerant of extremism,” she added that “pluralistic” British values need to be upheld.
Calling such terrorism “a new trend in the threat we face,” May noted that although the three recent terror attacks in the UK were not linked by “common networks,” they were “bound together by the single evil ideology of Islamic extremism”.
Regulation of the internet would include making internet providers take part in counter-extremism programs and make it more difficult for people to view pornography.
News reports claim that this may be the first time May has publicly called for an international effort to regulate the internet, which was introduced last year in the Investigatory Powers Act – also known as the “Snooper’s Charter” – which gives spying agencies and the government more power when it comes to internet-based investigations.
According to a report in the Independent, The Act “requires internet service providers to maintain a list of visited websites for all internet users for a year and gives intelligence agencies more powers to intercept online communications. Police can access the stored browsing history without any warrant or court order.” And May is all for it.
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