The American Alliance Party was founded by Americans with extensive backgrounds in information technology and data management. We're programmers, systems analysts and data architects, and as such, place immense importance on recognizing the benefits that a free and open internet brings our society. Our way of life was made possible by public investment in networking technology, and we believe it is imperative not only to continue that trend, but accelerate it greatly towards reaching new heights and lower costs. Some of the ways we intend to accomplish this goal include:
Defending Net Neutrality. Presently, federal law requires that all information transferred over the internet must be treated equally by information carriers. As a result, it's currently illegal for a company to pay an Internet Service Provider (ISP) to restrict access to unfavorable information or enact measures to slow it down in favor of a pay-to-play “fast lane.” This concept is commonly known as data neutrality or “Net Neutrality.”
However, wealthy interests behind telecommunications have engaged in a disingenuous campaign to change this and close off our open internet in furtherance of greater profits. Hiding behind the complexity of information systems and the lack of public familiarity with them, these interests peddle blatant falsehoods such as “it's too expensive to support data neutrality,” that “a tiered internet creates more consumer choice” or that Net Neutrality is somehow “government over-regulation run amok.”
These backhanded lies are factually indefensible. Net Neutrality protections for internet traffic are no different than laws preventing your telephone carrier, for example, from dropping more calls than your neighbor's because they opted to pay more. They're there for good reason. The Alliance Party is not in the business of allowing deceptive schemes to extort more money from the American people, and we will vehemently oppose any attempts to bind our internet in bad faith.
Expanding Internet Access. Although the United States was the original inventor of internet technologies, the quality and cost of American internet service is today lower and more expensive than most other Western countries.
While this is in part due to greater foreign investment in wireless technology as opposed to faster wired networks and the fact that our nation is significantly larger than most of our counterparts, this problem is rooted largely in a combination of two causes. The first are regulatory barriers that make it difficult for new companies to enter the market, and the second is unchecked greed from Internet Service Providers who make billions of dollars by overcharging Americans for internet service.
Today, the majority of internet traffic is provided by what's known as Tier 1 network. These networks are backbones of our internet, and the companies we pay internet bills to (ISPs such as Comcast, Time Warner, etc.) connect to Tier 1 networks to deliver internet to our homes and business in what's known as “The Last Mile.” To pose an analogy, if Tier 1 networks are highways, an ISP is your local street. Yet ISPs charge exhorbitantly higher costs for their services than Tier 1 networks do simply because they can in their role as middleman.
It is a priority of the American Alliance Party to reduce their role through several measures, including:
Promoting and funding municipal internet. Through appropriate legislation, we would seek to make it easier for local governments to fund their own internet service. Additionally, we would seek to invalidate state laws passed at the behest of the telecom lobby that prevent local governments from doing just that. If a town or city wishes to fund their own internet service, wealthy private companies should have no say in preventing them.
Running fiber cables through Universal Energy's systems. Two of the technologies behind the Universal Energy framework, Solar Roadways and the National Aqueduct are intentionally designed with the capability to run fiber and data cables. In doing so, we have a nigh limitless platform to use public infrastructure to create a secondary Tier 1 network at negligible cost. This can dramatically expand the scale and capacity of American internet service as a public utility, translating to extensive social benefits.
Fast-tracking FCC approval for new ISPs. Although we seek to expand the scale of public internet nationwide and weaken the grip of the telecom monopoly and its army of lobbyists, we also believe that there can never be too much competition. New innovative companies might be able to offer a higher quality of service that consumers can choose to purchase, and we seek to make it easier for new companies to emerge that can improve how we virtually communicate. We intend to accomplish this through a mixture of fast-tracking FCC approval for a company to act as an ISP, while also raising their Corporate Class to lower their tax bill and the taxes paid by their investors.
Respecting and Promoting Privacy Information security is of utmost importance, yet data security and data privacy are inherently intertwined. Most secure systems are breached by discovering private information about individuals that are then used to guess passwords or answers to knowledge-based questions.
Additionally, privacy violations can lead to other nefarious activity such as extortion or blackmail, saying nothing of the potential for political oppression by foreign governments (or craven Congressmen) that would sooner trample on the rights of citizens rather than empower them.
In recognition of these facts, the Alliance Party seeks to pass legislation that respects the privacy rights of Americans and keeps sensitive information free from prying eyes. This includes increased restrictions on how companies can sell data to advertisers, how government services can conduct surveillance and circumstances in which Americans can be compelled to reveal private information securely stored on electronic devices.
Just as importantly, we seek to promote material educating the public on how to secure their data from outside intrusion. In in doing so, we intend to partner with public interest organizations such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation to establish best-practices to secure private data that can be followed by individuals and organizations alike. Our constitution and form of government owes its existence to a respect of individual privacy, and it is our goal to extend that respect to all areas of cyberspace.
Open Security Protocols. Recognizing that respect of privacy must be more than lip service, the Alliance Party promotes greater expansion of public key encryption ciphers, hashing algorithms and security protocols. Specific proposals include:
Open VPN and SSL certificates for websites. We intend to partner with nonprofit public interest organizations to establish an SSL standard with publicly issued certificates for all website traffic to prevent interception from third parties. Additionally, we would seek to fund the support of open VPN access and expand services such as Tor for individuals looking for extra security protections against malicious surveillance.
Standardize Multi-Factor Authentication. One of the strongest security protections available is multi-factor authentication, which is when another device (such as an app on your smartphone) generates a unique code alongside your password to use when logging into something. That way even if a password is stolen, this second factor keeps your data private. Although extremely effective, there is no current standard to enable this feature across all websites and personal devices. We seek to work with top organizations to change this and implement a national standard for this simple enhancement to data security.
Expand Public-Key Encryption. The Alliance Party seeks to work with information security experts to promote ever-stronger encryption ciphers, setting 2048-bit as the minimum encryption standard. Additionally, we will spark initiatives for encrypting all server communication and protocols to ensure maximum protection of private data.
Mandatory database hashing. Lastly, we further seek to standardize database table hashing to ensure that a database, even if stolen, can't easily be opened to reveal private information. The minimum standard we would promote is SHA2/KDF with a hash salt.