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Hey, That’s A Secret

We all know that the internet is full of information, going from the simple answers to calculus integrals, example circuit designs, and latest research papers on IEEE. By the way, my major is no longer a secret.

Well, look back to December 2006 when a site called WikiLeaks posted a “document to assassinate governement officials signed by Shiekh Hassan Dawir Aweys” (Wikipedia- Wikileaks).  Since then, it has posted many leaks and has been under threats, censorships, and legal actions. However, it shows how connected the world is becoming. Any and all information really is open to be given freely on the internet.

Also typical to the internet is copying like, “Bulgarian investigative journalists Atanas Tchobanov and Assen Yordanov created one of the only websites in the world to successfully replicate WikiLeaks’ model of anonymously leaked bombshell documents” (Forbes).  In response, the one who lost its secret plans on getting some payback and control to the situation. Is the situation better for the truth being out? In a sense, yeah, but what’s the price?

So what’s my point? The analog is that websites like WikiLeaks and the Bulgarian BalkanLeaks are nodes. And people who give information are like in nodes without edges pointing back out.  The whole structure is not very strongly connected and proving the validity of information is difficult. With complete anonymity, it’s difficult to keep people accountable and make sure information is valid. Sometimes, it can go beyond intentions when it seems so outrageous, but plausible (or in the cases or viral videos, funny, stupid, or dangerous).

When we look at a network as large and complex as the internet, there’s a lot of information, relevant and irrelevant, but we have to also remember there’s a lot of people who just troll and/or give false information. With anonymity on the internet, it gives people a sense of “freedom” to be those unsavory people. While I do support an open internet because there are genuine people with genuine information, we still need some forms of protections to the network, lest a few bad nodes ruin the whole network.

And hey, just for kicks on how easily some people on the dangers of the internet networks by mathematicians if they’re bored. It shows that as we put data from our node to a central node, if the central node gets hacked, we’re in some serious trouble.


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