Cyberspace codes ground for social anarchy

by KC Stanfield, Staff Columnist

If the Internet was a physical place, it’d be just like the Wild West.

The only difference would be that the sheriff is a toddler with a water gun and there are twice as many bandits.

Don’t get me wrong, modern technology is a wonderful thing. Without it, our lives wouldn’t be nearly as easy as they are now. Could you even imagine having to revert back to a paper map instead of using a GPS when you’re lost? What about sending a letter? It’s safe to say, there’s no incentive to do things the old ways, unless you’re a trend defying hipster.

But at its core processor, technology is tool, and like any tool, it can easily become a weapon when placed in the hands of a psychopath.”

But at its core processor, technology is tool, and like any tool, it can easily become a weapon when placed in the hands of a psychopath. Technology is advancing at a faster rate— and, therefore, more dangerous rate. In the meantime, human society isn’t progressing nearly as fast. This is going to cause a lot of growing pains for all of us, as our world becomes more high-tech.

To be perfectly clear, we’re still able to use new technology, but we don’t fully understand it. Our society combined with the select few individuals who have the know-how leave us out to dry. If you follow technology news, you know it can get scary when virtual crimes lead to real-life hardships.

Just recently, a San Diego man was convicted for running a revenge porn website for the first time, despite the issue of revenge porn being an ongoing issue. The Urban Dictionary definition has been around since 2011. The fact of the matter is the U.S. government isn’t fast or able enough to stop cybercrimes. The Internet may seem like a place with limitless freedom, but far too many get harmed by the anarchy that governments can’t curb.

Perhaps, you had Anthem healthcare at one point in time. Well, good news, because hackers obtained more than 80 million customer records. I could easily run into identity theft down the line thanks to Anthem’s incompetency to secure my records. I may not like needles, but I’d take 1,000 injections over dealing with that bureaucratic nightmare.

If we take a look at piracy, Kickass Torrents had its website taken down and quickly resurfaced. The same thing happened with Pirate Bay. This modern-day hydra was taken down, but the clones and copies made sure it wasn’t going anywhere. It just goes to show the pathetic state of law enforcement is online. The rewards of committing crimes easily outweigh the risk, so more people are going abuse the law.

If you’re not careful, you could even have a SWAT team break down your door as a prank. All it takes is obtaining an IP address to find your house, some software that disguises the phone number and a call to 911. Swatting, as it’s called, is becoming more popular, and it can only be combatted after the damage is done to the victim.

The increasing popularity of technology and the practically frozen state of government enforcement allows for the current situation. Granted, online life is significantly freer than our tangible reality, but this high degree of freedom always comes at a cost. If you’re not careful, you’ll get burned. Learn the ins and outs of the Internet, and it’s important to always be wary. Hold onto your social security number like it’s a winning lottery ticket, because not even giant corporations are safe (thanks, Anthem).

It’s not much, but until the status-quo changes, caution is your best bet to avoid any real-life consequences. Screaming in outer space would be a more effective to communicate to our generation than advocating going off the grid in mass.