Is There Such a Thing as an Internet Kill Switch? | NBC4 Washington

Is There Such a Thing as an Internet Kill Switch?



    Fairfax Media via Getty Images
    (AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND OUT) Still life of laptop computer, mouse and phone. Monday 27 October 2003. AFR GENERIC Picture by LOUIE DOUVIS (Photo by Fairfax Media via Getty Images)

    Is there a switch you can flick to kill the internet? According to a panel of experts at this year's SXSW Conference in Austin, Texas, that universal "kill switch" does not exist — yet.

    "When people figure out how to push the right buttons…it just makes us better at realizing that taking the steps to get more resilient are necessary," Christian Dawson, co-founder of the Internet Infrastructure Coalition said during a Friday panel.

    The idea doesn't seem that far-fetched, especially following two recent incidents that knocked parts of the internet offline: one, a simple typo by Amazon Web Services; the other, a botnet attack on internet company Dyn.

    As NBC News reports, a Brookings Institution report released in October found that in the previous year, internet 81 disruptions in 19 countries came at a cost of $2.4 billion total to the economies of those nations.