Could California’s Net Neutrality Bill Curb Internet Crimes?

Anyone proactive online since dial-up speeds were popular knows Net Neutrality could mean speeds are reduced for others or increased for persons willing to pay. Advertising expenses would reach almost unaffordable heights for some, while content you have enjoyed before may be impossible to find – if your ISP does not block access to it altogether.

One notion is that with stricter access comes fewer internet crimes. Is that belief ill-conceived, or could having ‘controlled movement’ when accessing various websites actually force people into old school criminal thinking – far easier to control with today’s technology?

Legislators Want Tougher Laws

An internet without rules is undoubtedly grim, and many have experienced this fact firsthand with numerous Facebook live killings, Craigslist murders and abductions, and various other internet crimes and scams. SB-822 specifically addresses broadband internet access service and provisions that would make California the toughest state on Net Neutrality. The bill would dissuade internet service providers (ISPs) from denying access, or speeding up or slowing down video content or websites, or forcing some websites to pay for ‘premium’ speeds.

During the same session, SB-460 inched closer to legislative action, an action lauded by committee members. It would forbid establishments that encroach upon net neutrality rules in SB-822 from being awarded public contracts.

Internet service providers strongly oppose both bills, citing an overreach into what regulations the federal government seek to replace.

Passing These Bills Could Thwart Crime

Most internet crimes, such as fraud and other schemes, are crimes of opportunity. Having the ability to freely access sites across the world provides just enough ammunition for folks who intend to harm one’s financial health. Bank and loan fraud manifests from one’s ability to easily acquire username and password information from black market sites, too.

Given the opportunity, persons with the wrong mindset will capitalize on anyone’s right to access sites with or without parental permission.

Take away one’s ability to access certain websites, and you will neutralize digitally conceived threats of violence and financial malfeasance. However, punishing select groups of law violators hurts the millions that want to access content from a myriad of legitimate mediums.

California politicians will engage in an epic battle to either prevent internet ‘gatekeepers’ from existing altogether, or may have to rethink their strategy to assuage the fears that telecom giants will lose customers in droves.

What Comes Next?

Both SB-822 and SB-460 will hear arguments on the legislative floor this week, with no finite timeline for final approval and enactment. Until something is passed, the current state of internet access will remain unchanged.

Even if something is passed expediently, do not expect internet crimes to curb immediately. Those truly intent on using the internet to perpetuate crimes will find their way around blocks or rules, although having regulation may greatly diminish the number of internet-based crimes committed annually.

Regardless what crimes are committed online, all defendants are innocent unless proof beyond doubt exists to the contrary.

James E. Blatt works all internet crimes cases with one goal – to get all charges dropped. If you have been charged with or are currently being investigated for internet crimes, contact the firm immediately.