In the days after the election, the internet was full of conspiracy theories and speculation about what Trump’s victory might mean for the internet.
Some argued that the internet would be closed down and all transactions would be banned.
Others said it would allow for a massive crackdown on online commerce, leading to widespread internet shutdowns and seizures.
On December 15, the New York Times published an article titled “The End of the Internet” which outlined the many fears about the Trump administration’s plans.
The article cited a recent speech from former Secretary of State and 2016 Republican presidential candidate Mike Pompeo, who warned that the Internet could be the new “digital apartheid.”
The article went on to explain that the “Trump administration has a long history of taking advantage of the internet to intimidate citizens and undermine civil liberties.”
It then outlined how the Trump Administration’s plans would be implemented, including by a new Department of Homeland Security.
This is the latest development in a string of attempts by the Trump government to control the internet, especially in light of the recent attacks on the US.
According to the DHS, the US government “has been monitoring and policing the internet for nearly four years, and has used this authority to impose draconian restrictions on speech, to regulate the content of social media, to shut down internet service providers, and to harass and prosecute journalists and others who report on the government’s abuses.”
The New York Daily News reported that the US is currently working on a plan to regulate social media.
However, a spokesman for Pompeo did not directly address the DHS’ plan, and instead emphasized the need to protect citizens from foreign governments interfering with their digital freedoms.
“The internet was built to enable communication and commerce,” he said.
“We are now seeing a new trend of the government using the internet as a tool to control information, including the freedom of expression and speech.”
According to the Daily News, Pompeo told lawmakers on January 23 that the Trump regime has “always been a supporter of free speech and a defender of individual rights, including freedom of speech.”