A new law enacted Monday in France will allow the government to shut down websites without a court order, in a move that officials say will help combat terrorism and child pornography but which civil liberties advocates warn threatens free speech rights.
The law, which has been under consideration for years, gained new traction after last month’s attack against the Charlie Hebdo magazine headquarters in Paris. It implements provisions from two existing French laws—the Loppsi Act of 2011, which blacklists sites providing child pornography, and the Terrorism Act of 2014.
Under the new regulations, the government may order any internet service provider to shut down a website within 24 hours. Blocked websites will redirect to a landing page that explains why it was shut down and, in the case of child pornography websites, include a recommendation to seek medical help.
The cyber crime unit of the French police force will be devoted to identifying websites to be blocked, with the content subject to review by the force’s anti-terrorism branch. The French data protection authority, the CNIL, will oversee the process.
Opponents of the law criticized the French government for its implementation, saying it side-steps the judicial process and gives authorities power to further crack “France’s government needs to seriously think about whether this law will stop terrorists, or merely chill speech.”
Click Here: Bape Kid 1st Camo Ape Head rompers—Jillian York, Electronic Frontier Foundationdown on constitutional rights. Moreover, they say, it is not a good deterrent.
“With this decree establishing the administrative censorship for Internet content, France once again circumvents the judicial power, betraying the separation of powers in limiting what is the first freedom of all in a democracy—freedom of speech,” said Felix Tréguer, co-founder of La Quadrature du Net, which promotes internet rights in France, adding that website blocking “is ineffective since it is easily circumvented.”
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