Inventor of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee, wants to save it

Security / Tech
Tim Berners-Lee

Many would agree that the internet has matured into a very useful tool but it has also fostered a dark side.

The World Wide Web (mostly referred to as the internet now) has grown in leaps and bounds since it’s inception in the late 80’s and very early 90’s. Many would agree that the internet has matured into a very useful tool but it has also fostered a dark side. Tim Berners-Lee couldn’t agree more and he wants to save the internet from becoming something many of us don’t want it to become. Tim Berners-Lee is the inventor of the World Wide Web and he believes there are a few things that are killing his precious creation.

“Over the past 12 months, I’ve become increasingly worried about three new trends, which I believe we must tackle in order for the web to fulfill its true potential as a tool which serves all of humanity,” he said in a statement issued from London. He cited compromised personal data and fake news, which he says has “spread like wildfire.”

“Even in countries where we believe governments have citizens’ best interests at heart, watching everyone, all the time is simply going too far,” he said, in an allusion to WikiLeaks’ disclosure of what documents claim is a vast CIA surveillance operation. “It creates a chilling effect on free speech and stops the web from being used as a space to explore important topics, like sensitive health issues, sexuality or religion.”

Tim Berners-Lee along with other specialists in the field, such as Cisco’s Monique Morrow, are deeply concerned with privacy and cybersecurity and how quickly cyber threats spread. The ease in which a hacker or the CIA can gain access to smartphones, computers and IoT devices is alarming.

“If the CIA is working on breaking into phones like other hackers, you can bet it’s working on other devices, just like hackers,” Smith says, pointing to malware that was wormed its way into some medical devices at major healthcare providers across the globe. The security breach put tens of thousands of patients records at risk, says TrapX Security.

“Consumer-grade IoT devices were designed with two goals in mind: ease of use and low cost,” says Slawek Ligier, vice president of engineering at computer-security company Barracuda Networks. “Security just now is becoming something vendors are starting to consider. With millions of IoT devices already out there, they will continue being an easy target and we’re likely to see many more of these types of attacks.”

I guess we’ll see if Berners-Lee has a plan or any sort of impact on trying to save what he helped to create. I would say, for every person trying to do good and make things right, you have another trying to counter that progress. Still, that doesn’t mean one shouldn’t try and make it right.

What do you think of Tim Berners-Lee’s comments about the current state of the internet? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

  Source: USA Today
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