Websites Closed Down by Police
The chief of police claimed that they have successfully closed down 2,000 websites this year.
They claim, however, the websites they close down are mainly ones selling fake designer goods and ones that harvest credit card details.
Now, no wants people to be conned by sites like that and it is a good thing that they close them down.
Sweeping Police Powers
However, it is a very sweeping power that they have.
They have absolute power, therefore, to say whether a website stays up or down.
There are very few areas of the law where the police have such sweeping powers.
Normally they would have to make an arrest and go through the court system.
Problem with Websites from Far Flung Countries
The big problem they would have nowadays is that many of these websites are run from far flung countries, where there is little in the way of rule of law, and they would have to get Interpol involved.
The freedom of the internet is great and it has been good for democracy in the Arab countries and other repressive countries throughout the world.
It makes information freely available to everyone – everyone who has internet access anyway.
However, it does have its downsides.
So, perhaps they should limit police powers to those websites which operate from abroad.
One would be pretty annoyed, however, if the police just shut down one’s website and one would have to fight to get it back open again.
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