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The End of Net Anonymity In Brazil 242

Posted by kdawson
from the good-while-it-lasted dept.
DieNadel writes, "The Brazilian senate is considering a bill that will make it a crime to join a chat, blog, or download from the Internet without fully identifying oneself first. Privacy groups and Internet providers are very concerned, and are trying to lobby against the bill, but it seems they won't have much success." From the article: "If approved, it will be a crime, punishable with up to 4 years of jail time, to disseminate virus or trojans, unauthorizedly access data banks or networks and send e-mail, join chat, write a blog or download content anonymously."
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The End of Net Anonymity In Brazil

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  • ...be sure to identify yourself when you distribute trojans!
  • Lord forbid that someone steals your "government-supplied certificate," or you could be doing some serious time in a Brazilian prison.
    • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Monday November 06, 2006 @12:50PM (#16737689)
      First off, passing a law that the criminals will disregard is just about useless. They're already criminals. Breaking another law is not going to deter them.

      Secondly, there are so many ways around this when you are a criminal. Crack someone else's machine and you can do whatever you want as if you were legally that person. Who stupid is that?

      If you're really good, you'd crack 2 machines outside Brazil and use them to bounce traffic around before it got to you. Your machine and record would be 100% clean.

      Finally, let's talk wireless. Unless the government wants to crack down on unsecured wireless connections, they're going to lose this one.

      This is nothing more than an attempt to scare the good citizens into self-censoring their legal activities. And that is disgusting.
      • by Control Group (105494) * on Monday November 06, 2006 @12:54PM (#16737747) Homepage
        First off, passing a law that the criminals will disregard is just about useless. They're already criminals. Breaking another law is not going to deter them.

        If we paid attention to that logic, we'd have 50% fewer laws than we do.

        Not that you're wrong, of course, just that passing laws is how the government proves it's Doing Something, irrespective of wheter the law does anything other than screw the innocent.

        And I don't think this varies appreciably from government to government.
        • Not that you're wrong, of course, just that passing laws is how the government proves it's Doing Something, irrespective of wheter the law does anything other than screw the innocent.

          So, how about if all the laws on the books had a limited life span? After 8 years (or 16 or 32 or whatever), they expired and needed to be passed again?

          That way Congress could continue to "be tough on X" without needing to do any actual work or impact our Freedoms at all?
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by udderly (890305) *
          Perfect example: http://www.drugsense.org/wodclock.htm [drugsense.org]
      • Finally, let's talk wireless. Unless the government wants to crack down on unsecured wireless connections, they're going to lose this one.

        What's there to crack down on? If someone is allowing someone to use their open access point to conduct illegal activities then they are just as guilty as the person that committed the crime. Either keep detailed logs and require a login and encryption to use your access point so you can prove who was using it at the time or face the consequences. I am 100% for punishi

        • Encryption, logins, and logs aren't going to prevent any of this from happening. Have you not heard of an internet cafe? Pay $15 cash and all that becomes useless and untraceable. I'm not even going into the cracking of wifi keys on private access points, which btw is the reason they'll never successfully prosecute someone running ANY currently manufactured wifi access point, open or "secured". What's worse is you prestented the same line of thinking as the politicians who don't let the obvious facts get in
          • Have you not heard of an internet cafe? Pay $15 cash and all that becomes useless and untraceable.

            I guess you'll have to identify yourself on internet cafes in Brazil, then. And internet cafes will then have to make a list who was sitting at which computer at which time.

            I'm not even going into the cracking of wifi keys on private access points, which btw is the reason they'll never successfully prosecute someone running ANY currently manufactured wifi access point, open or "secured".

            Are you sure the judges

            • Judge?!?!? What happened to the jury? They are the ones who actually *convict* someone afterall. And it'd take a semi-knowledgeable lawyer about 30 seconds to prove that wifi can be cracked. No biggie. Next!
        • Oops, you forgot to patch your machine and someone used the hole to download the new Brittney Spears song illegally, from your machine. Have fun getting you ass pounded in jail!!

          Seriously, if a law like this passed in the US I would have so much fun breaking into people's machines that I don't like and doing all kinds of illegal activities on them so I can send them to jail. Finally, the IT geeks will have their day as lords!!!

          Now does anyone know a certain "shoot them in the face" bird hunting VP's IP a
      • by Dunbal (464142)
        First off, passing a law that the criminals will disregard is just about useless. They're already criminals.

              Umm by definition if you do something that is not illegal, you are not a criminal UNTIL the law is passed that makes it illegal. Only then are you a "criminal".
        • by MBGMorden (803437)
          What I think he means, is that it's useless to outlaw a seemingly innocent act in order to try to PREVENT things that truly should be illegal, as the people who are going to violate law SHOULD_BE_ILLEGAL, are certainly not going to care about violating law PREVENT_WHAT_SHOULD_BE_ILLEGAL.

          For example there is inherently nothing really wrong about accessing the net anonymously. What Brazil is a afraid of is the stuff you MIGHT do if you are anonymous. But you can be sure that anyone who is hacking a computer
      • Finally, let's talk wireless. Unless the government wants to crack down on unsecured wireless connections, they're going to lose this one.

        Furthermore... how do you meaningfully define where "the Internet" begins and ends? How about a wireless mesh network that doesn't have any physical connection to the (now corporatized and bureacratized to the point of practical uselessness "Series of Tubes" Internet) but happens to use TCP/IP? How about BBS's? (Not too popular these days, but might see a resurgence i

  • What about kids? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by javilon (99157) on Monday November 06, 2006 @12:47PM (#16737631) Homepage
    Will a 10 years old kid go to trial if he posts anonymously on a forum like slashdot?
    • by Kjella (173770)
      Will a 10 years old kid go to trial if he posts anonymously on a forum like slashdot?

      Of course not. Only "undesirables" will be put on trial, why else would you criminalize most of the population and in particular the intelligensia? If they wanted to catch all, they could just set up a huge sign in the city center saying "prison".
      • by Dunbal (464142)
        Will a 10 years old kid go to trial if he posts anonymously on a forum like slashdot?

        To which you replied:

        and in particular the intelligensia?

              Hahahahahahaha thanks for the laugh! Are you inferring that slashdot is the "intelligensia"? Funniest thing I've heard all week!

        MOD PARENT UP!!!
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Kjella (173770)
          Hahahahahahaha thanks for the laugh! Are you inferring that slashdot is the "intelligensia"? Funniest thing I've heard all week!

          No, but unless Brazil has changed very much in the last few years since I was there, if you're on internet regularly then you're probably fairly well off, or you are taking higher education. I guess that sounds funny to you and me (we've got 50% broadband coverage here, don't remember Internet in general). China isn't building their firewall just for fun either.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by cyclops79 (966627)
      This is not about anonymous posting, but anonymous access.

      The users will only have internet access after supplying name, address, phone number and identity number to the ISP, who would then verify this information. Both the user and the ISP can be charged if they fail to do this properly.

      I live in Brazil, and this is what I could find so far.
      • by 1u3hr (530656)
        This is not about anonymous posting, but anonymous access.

        If your access is not anonymous; i.e. Your IP --> Your identity, you can't post anonymously, you can't read a blog anoymously, you can't do ANYTHING anonymously.

  • "If approved, it will be a crime, punishable with up to 4 years of jail time, to disseminate virus or trojans, unauthorizedly access data banks or networks and send e-mail, join chat, write a blog or download content anonymously."

    When all Usenet posts are legit I'll believe it.

    In other words, the only people this will affect are those who do take precautions to adequately hide themselves, those ignorant of the law, and those where the government just wants to tack on 4 more years!
  • I'm surprised this came up first in brazil; this seems more like something the US or the UK would pass (if we haven't already).
  • I'm from the US, and I know Jack about how the political system in Brazil works, but I did read the article. This is a bill introduced by one crazy senator, Senator Eduardo Azeredo (PSDB-MG). This isn't law and hopefully will never be. I don't think the people of Brazil are this gullible.

    What is PSDB-MG, anyway? Piece of Shit Damn British MG?
    • by Dunbal (464142)
      This is a bill introduced by one crazy senator, Senator Eduardo Azeredo

            How much do you want to bet that he's expecting a big juicy check in US dollars from the **AA's, or Microsoft, or both. Piracy is a BIG problem in Brazil. Almost everything is pirated.

      and I know Jack about how the political system in Brazil works

            Oh it's like the US, you can buy all the politicians you want, only in Brazil, it's cheaper.
      • by 1u3hr (530656)
        Piracy is a BIG problem in Brazil. Almost everything is pirated.

        But I'd assume, like Asia, that most piracy is via optical disc. Why spend a week downloading when you can buy 5GB discs of music, software, whatever at $1/disc more or less? Online piracy maybe for MP3 tunes and such smallish files.

        • by Dunbal (464142)
          Why spend a week downloading when you can buy

                Because you can spend a week downloading, and then SELL!
          • by famazza (398147)
            Why spend a week downloading when you can buy

            No way I'll spend a week downloading just to sell. I prefer to buy a CD right around the next corner, copy and sell it here anyway.

            Note: I do not pirate
    • by DieNadel (550271)
      According to Google [google.com], it's the Social Democratic Party of Brazil. I think MG stands for Minas Generais, a Brazilian state.
    • This is a bill introduced by one crazy senator, Senator Eduardo Azeredo (PSDB-MG). This isn't law and hopefully will never be. I don't think the people of Brazil are this gullible.

      I've lived in Brazil years ago. I think you're right that this isn't going to pass, but from what I remember, if it doesn't pass it'll be because of technical arguments, not because of privacy ones. I always complained that Brazilians were especially prone to "think of the children" arguments, but I guess I've been seeing si

    • by gustgr (695173)
      PSDB is his party and stands for Partido da Social Democracia Brasileira (Brazilian Social Democracy Party), and MG is the state he representes and stands for Minas Gerais.

      Nonetheless, there is no party fidelity in Brazil and the politicians keep changing from one party to another one, so this doesn't represent anything at all. Indeed, this Senator is really insane (and probably corrupted).
    • Re:Don't Brazil Bash (Score:4, Informative)

      by rcastro0 (241450) on Monday November 06, 2006 @01:26PM (#16738191) Homepage
      >What is PSDB-MG, anyway? Piece of Shit Damn British MG?

      This is slashdot, and you didn't think a question like that would go unanswered, did you ?

      PSDB is Partido da Social Democracia Brasileira (http://www.psdb.org.br/ [psdb.org.br]) translates to the Brazilian Socio-Democracy Party. MG stands for Minas Gerais, the state Senator Azeredo represents.

      As a Brazilian I should add:
      * PSDB is the leading opposition party in Brazil. Its candidate just lost the presidential race (39% to 61%).
      * Normally I wouldn't think this sort of thing to come out of PSDB (usually more liberal than the government). But heck...
      * Mr Azeredo has been involved in an unrelated corruption scandal after proposing the law ("valerioduto").
      * I also do not agree with such a law, as many brazilians don't (babelfish this, for instance: A Liberdade da Rede corre Perigo [ig.com.br])
      * This law may not pass (be approved) -- I hope it won't.
      * Even if it does, it may not be enforceable, as someone here already pointed out -- Freenet comes to mind.
      • by ultranova (717540)

        Even if it does, it may not be enforceable, as someone here already pointed out -- Freenet comes to mind.

        Freenet does not help here. Freenet is not capable of hiding the fact that you're running Freenet from your ISP. Therefore, running Freenet would make you an immediate suspect. In fact, since the whole purpose of Freenet is publishing and viewing information anonymously, and your node is likely to route queries and inserts from other people, running Freenet would almost certainly make you guilty of a

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      I'm Brazillian.

      Have you heard about prizon riots in Sao Paulo - Brazil? PSDB is the party that have governed Sao Paulo State for the past 12 years, and will govern Sao Paulo State for the next 4 years. Eduardo Azeredo was president of the PSDB party (and founder) until he renounced this year, after he declared he received money channelled from the government in backdoor business deals, through Marcos Valerio.

      Laws in Brazil are usually proposed in response of something that happened. The text of the projects
    • by QuickFox (311231)
      I don't think the people of Brazil are this gullible.

      What makes you think the Brazilians are so much less gullible than the Americans?
      • by MightyYar (622222)
        I don't follow - we don't have this sort of legislation in the US. I'm pretty sure that people around the world are, on balance, about equally gullible.
        • by QuickFox (311231)
          I don't follow - we don't have this sort of legislation in the US.

          Patriot act, Guantanamo prisoners without trial, war in Iraq linked to terrorism when no such link existed in reality, war in Iraq linked to WMD when no such link existed in reality, general fear and hysteria around terrorism as excuse for draconian laws and measures -- when terrorism only caused a fraction of the number of deaths caused by say, traffic, or domestic violence, or obesity, or illness, or even caused by the hysteria itself, in t
        • Not all of the proposals have passed yet, but even if we throw the evil Republican Party out of Congress, more of this stuff *will* get passed, they'll just be doing it to "Protect Children from Exploitation!" rather than to "Protect the Homeland from Terrorists!", or else to "Protect Our Artists from Copyright Abusers!".

          "Data Retention" rules requiring ISPs to keep user accounting information, credit card numbers, dialup numbers, and dynamic IP address assignments get proposed, either as laws or as regulat

  • Freedom can be dangerous when the government harvests what you've done with it. Just get people hooked on something free, like the Internet, and then unilaterally add strict requirements later, that people will "compromise" to accept rather than give up their toy.

    Like a drug pusher who tells you "the first bag is free".

    Or an ISP, telco or bank which unilaterally changes Terms of Service or privacy "agreements".
  • Just like when an office network's filtering software is just a little too strict, the smarter users will proxy their traffic outside. I could see ISP's in Argentina, Venezeula, and elsewhere getting some additional traffic....
  • You could have a background music with your post... Brazil, Brazil....

    How is this enforceable? Any site that is access over a secure connection cannot be monitored. Unless they have guilty-until-proven innocent system of justice, of course.

  • Lets face it, it is just not possible to enforce this kind of law.

    With Onion Routing Networks [eff.org], Mixmaster Type II Anonymous Email [sourceforge.net], GPG/PGP Type I Anonymous remailers [feraga.com], and bidirectional encrypted anonymous e-mail addresses [iusmentis.com] that can deliver to a news group [google.com]
    Add to this the use of unsecured 802.11 networks and there is just no way to stop a person that truly wants to be anonymous on the internet.

    Unfortunately most do not know how to use them, so most of the internet is only sudo-anonymous.
    • by Kjella (173770)
      Unfortunately most do not know how to use them, so most of the internet is only sudo-anonymous.

      Unless you mean that most people use linux and use a local "anonymous" account to access the Internet, I think the word you're looking for is pseudo. Besides, if you make it a crime per se to use these anonymous networks, they're pretty much all toast. It's another one of those laws that basicly say "it's illegal to do something we can't track/trace/access". If you have nothing to hide, why are you hiding from ze
  • How can this law be enforced without massive repression? Whatever the law is, it must to allow media to quote someone without naming them. If you ban news organizations from making quotes without precise verifiable sources, you eliminate any semblance of a free press and a free society. Can't users just enter into a confidentiality agreement with a media source? The Internet user identifies themselves to the media entity, tells them the information that they want to post, and the media posts it with a g
  • Tools
    Options
    Privacy

    Please fill out the following fields. If you are in brazil, this is mandatory. If you are not, just
    Name :
    Email :
    Social :
    DOB :
    DL:
    Mother's Maiden Name:
    Email:
    Address :
    Your password:

  • I already sent a mail to the senator that I voted in the last election, asking him to not support such stupid bill.
    You can find your senator's email address in this page: http://www.senado.gov.br/sf/senadores [senado.gov.br]
    Hopefully more brazilians will do the same.

    Eu já enviei um email ao senador que eu votei na última eleição, pedindo a ele para não apoiar este projeto de lei estúpido.
    Você pode encontrar o endereço de email do seu senador nesta página: http://www.senado.gov.b [senado.gov.br]
  • by Zaatxe (939368) on Monday November 06, 2006 @01:34PM (#16738327)
    I'm from Brazil and if this law pass I will with I were in China.
    The worst part is what I saw on the local news: they want us not only to provide our ID data, but also PROVIDE A XEROX COPY OF OUR ID CARDS to the sites we wish to have access to! After they approve our data, we will be able to access them.

    Politicians don't have the slighest idea of how technology works...
  • Ironically, such a law can only be used against people who DO identify themselves! lol!
  • ... the answer is to legislate.

    If they were carpenters, they'd hit people with hammers or nail them to the floor. (A much preferred approach in my opinion.) If they were "computer people" they'd create better means by which to stop the mayhem of cyber crime from continuing.

    Since the mayhem shows no signs of slowing, let alone stopping, legislating is the only tool they have at their disposal. Is it bad legislation? YUP! Let's all try recommending something better. I think they should get "internet lice
  • How can they lump together malicious actions like intentionally disseminating virii or trojans with chatting or emailing anonymously?

    Even worse, what if you sign up for the ID and you get a worm that disseminates a virus? 4 years in jail for something you didn't even know what happening.
  • <tinfoil_hat>
    Seriously - scoff at this law at your own peril. A world where 'net anonymity is unlawful is probably also a world where Tor and TrueCrypt are unlawful... where by law, your communications, writings and journals must be open to whatever official set of prying eyes feels the need to review them.

    In spite of how ridiculous or unenforceable the law might seem, if Brazil gets away with this in principle, other governments 'round the world will be salivating at the prospect of doing the same. I
  • ...who first read : "The End of Net Anonymity Is Brazil" ?
  • by ElephanTS (624421)
    Hopefully this will be easy to implement on the /. forums. Changing 'anonymous coward' to 'anonymous criminal' should do it.

    Much as I dislike ACs making crappy comments on my posts I seriously do not want them criminalised for it.
  • In Taiwan you have to effectively give the equivalant of your Social Security Number to register for things such as MMOs. It's so bad they have Taiwanese SSN generators, so you can make accounts for MMOs without using your real one. Imagine if that was done in the US. =)

    IIRC South Korea has a similar deal, but it's lame if you want to join a web fourm ( like this one ) in Taiwan and you don't have an SSN.
  • Like South Korea? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by CycleFreak (99646)

    Like this article [slashdot.org] talked about?

    Next year a new law will come into force which will force Koreans to reveal their name and ID number before they share their opinions online.

    The article doesn't mention any specific penalties for posting anonymously. 4 years of prison time is an absurd penalty for a (usually) harmless offense. It does mention other, more serious offenses than insulting someone and "up to 4 years ..." so I'd guess that if you say "that guy's an idiot" without revealing your identity and you

  • And here I thought it was the US that had the crown for poorly thought out knee-jerk laws that don't do anything but make feel politicians feel as if they're getting something done, while serving as a detriment to the general populace.

    The first obvious issue is enforcement. Is the Brazillan "SS" going to start tracking everyone on the Internet who posts under a pseudonym? Are they going to troll the net for all anonymous content, and play "guess-the-Brazillian"? Were they planning on asking virus writer

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