US law enforcement officials to argue for encryption backdoors before Congress

Posted:
in General Discussion edited August 2015
Later on Wednesday, two key U.S. law enforcement officials will testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee to argue in support of backdoors in various consumer encryption platforms, a report said.




FBI Director James Comey and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates will argue that there is no absolute right to privacy, since it must be weighed against public safety, according to the Associated Press. A number of people in American law enforcement have claimed that growing levels of encryption have made it difficult to monitor criminal and terrorist communications.

"I believe that we have to protect the privacy of our citizens and the safety of the Internet," an excerpt of Yates' prepared remarks reads. "But those interests are not absolute. And they have to be balanced against the risks we face from creating warrant-proof zones of communication."

An assortment of technology companies, Apple among them, have contended that privacy is essential and that any legally-mandated backdoor could be exploited not only by the U.S. government but by criminals and foreign governments. Encryption has increasingly become a selling point, particularly after 2013 revelations about the scope of National Security Agency surveillance programs, which regularly scoop up vast amounts of data about people not suspected of any crime.

Both Apple and Google have become proponents of full-disk encryption on mobile devices, although latter's progress has been slower. Apple has touted iOS 8 as being so difficult to crack that, even when served with a warrant, it would be unable to decrypt an iPhone's data.

In June, Apple CEO Tim Cook delivered a speech at the Electronic Privacy Information Center's Champions of Freedom event, asserting that people have a "fundamental right to privacy," which is demanded not only by the American public but by morality and the U.S. Constitution. He also brought up the issue of backdoors, calling them fundamentally flawed.

"Criminals are using every technology tool at their disposal to hack into people's accounts," he said. "If they know there's a key hidden somewhere, they won't stop until they find it."
«134

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 71
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    These people are enemies of the Constitution and the American people and should be fired immediately.
  • Reply 2 of 71
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    These people are enemies of the Constitution and the American people and should be fired immediately.

    They represent the opinions of their boss, and he's not so fireable.
  • Reply 3 of 71
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 13,001member
    These people are enemies of the Constitution and the American people and should be fired immediately.

    They probably cut class they day the Bill of Rights was taught.
  • Reply 4 of 71
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    They represent the opinions of their boss, and he's not so fireable.

    One more year! One more year!
  • Reply 5 of 71
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    So does the 4th amendment not exist when it comes to the NSA?
  • Reply 6 of 71
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    rogifan wrote: »
    So does the 4th amendment not exist when it comes to the NSA?

    The Fourth Amendment, like much of the Bill of Rights, has pretty well been tossed out by the courts and ignored by the rest of government.
  • Reply 7 of 71
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    The Fourth Amendment, like much of the Bill of Rights, has pretty well been tossed out by the courts and ignored by the rest of government.

    Quite honestly—and despite the Snowden revelations—I fully expect the incursions on our personal liberties to increase, not decrease with the next president. My preferred candidate will probably not be elected and we'll get another dummy who just rubber stamps the demands of the existing corporatocracy. As the tax base continues to shrink and the debt balloons to $30+ trillion dollars (an inescapable and unpayable debt), the prying into our every move and demand for our every dollar will get worse..
  • Reply 8 of 71
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,883member
    F U, govt. If there is a backdoor, anyone can attempt to crack it and some nefarious users could be successful.

    We shouldn't give up our freedoms for public safety.
  • Reply 9 of 71
    freerangefreerange Posts: 1,594member
    Hey Comey and Yates, go FK yourselves! Do your job with the tools you have, which have cost the taxpayers BILLIONS upon BILLIONS of dollars, and STFU! You do not speak for the citizens of this country. We, the people you SERVE, have spoken loudly and clearly, stay out of our private lives!
  • Reply 10 of 71
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    One more year! One more year!

    Foolish quacking. All presidents serve under the mandates of the intelligence and thought police apparatus that never changes from one administration to the next. Just ask Jack Kennedy. It will be as bad or worse under the next, just as it was worse under the previous.
  • Reply 11 of 71
    freerangefreerange Posts: 1,594member
    One more year! One more year!

    ... And Dick Cheney was the Prince of Peace?
  • Reply 12 of 71
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    freerange wrote: »
    ... And Dick Cheney was the Prince of Peace?

    No one said that. Obama just happens to be the current Idiot-in-Charge.
  • Reply 13 of 71
    ralphmouthralphmouth Posts: 192member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post



    These people are enemies of the Constitution and the American people and should be fired immediately.

     

    Law Enforcement has stopped so many terrorist attacks by monitoring the communications of potential terrorists. But because this all happened behind the scenes so to speak you don't believe it. If there was a successful attack, you would blame them for failing to do their job even though it is people like you that make it more difficult than it should be.

  • Reply 14 of 71
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    ralphmouth wrote: »
    Law Enforcement has stopped so many terrorist attacks by monitoring the communications of potential terrorists. But because this all happened behind the scenes so to speak you don't believe it. If there was a successful attack, you would blame them for failing to do their job even though it is people like you that make it more difficult than it should be.

    That's simply wrong and that is proven by their own testimony to Congress. They've wasted hundreds of billions on programs that have improved nothing and only serve to bloat the government.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patriot_Act#Controversy
  • Reply 15 of 71
    damn_its_hotdamn_its_hot Posts: 1,193member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post



    F U, govt. If there is a backdoor, anyone can attempt to crack it and some nefarious users could be successful.



    We shouldn't give up our freedoms for public safety.

     

    I would go so far as to say that giving up our freedom in the right to privacy is giving up our public safety.

     

    I do not believe in what Snowden did. I do believe that our government needs to be more honest and somewhat more transparent about what they do - but don't just create another group/agency to review what needs to be kept silent and what the public is allowed to know. 

     

    This notion of a backdoor is stupid - if it is invented by man it can be broken by man.

  • Reply 16 of 71
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    ralphmouth wrote: »
    Law Enforcement has stopped so many terrorist attacks by monitoring the communications of potential terrorists. But because this all happened behind the scenes so to speak you don't believe it. If there was a successful attack, you would blame them for failing to do their job even though it is people like you that make it more difficult than it should be.

    The NSA even admitted they haven't stopped a single terrorist attack with all this snooping.

    You want to secure the country, secure the borders. Terrorists are sneaking over and getting ready.
  • Reply 17 of 71
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    Quite honestly—and despite the Snowden revelations—I fully expect the incursions on our personal liberties to increase, not decrease with the next president. My preferred candidate will probably not be elected and we'll get another dummy who just rubber stamps the demands of the existing corporatocracy. As the tax base continues to shrink and the debt balloons to $30+ trillion dollars (an inescapable and unpayable debt), the prying into our every move and demand for our every dollar will get worse..

    That's more like it. Although the stance taken by Tim Cook is the first hopeful sign I've seen in 60 years of watching this paranoid government work. (I remember the McCarthy and HUAC hearings, the instant suspiciousness of the Kennedy assassination, the overthrow of Allende, that sort of thing.)

    The basic right to privacy is something we have not had to debate in a meaningful way until now, when our entire mental life is contained in a little slab in our pocket. Cook is leading the charge on this. Very brave, very smart. It may force a basic change in outlook and weaken the idea of a police state, which as far as I can tell, goes all the way back in the US to the appearance of the labor movement in the 1800s. But I haven't studied that early history.

    I do know that by the late 40s the police state here became fully fledged when the OSS . . . well, you know the story.
  • Reply 18 of 71
    phone-ui-guyphone-ui-guy Posts: 1,019member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post



    These people are enemies of the Constitution and the American people and should be fired immediately.

     

    Law Enforcement has stopped so many terrorist attacks by monitoring the communications of potential terrorists. But because this all happened behind the scenes so to speak you don't believe it. If there was a successful attack, you would blame them for failing to do their job even though it is people like you that make it more difficult than it should be.


     

    You are concerned about them protecting us as a target. The real point is to not do things that make us a target to begin with. The ounce of prevention is wholly misplaced.

  • Reply 19 of 71
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member

    I just want to make sure that everyone understands that they do not have benevolent intent with these demands.

    This has nothing to do with public safety. The government isn't just trying to eliminate a security hole. They want to maintain the ability to spy on all citizens, as they have been able to do for a long time. Personal encrypted technology is now encroaching on that ability, so naturally they want to eradicate it.

     

    Just want to make sure everyone is aware.

  • Reply 20 of 71
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,678member
    The NSA even admitted they haven't stopped a single terrorist attack with all this snooping.

    You want to secure the country, secure the borders. Terrorists are sneaking over and getting ready.

    Unless they do what we do - come from above. Shock and Awe terrorism.
Sign In or Register to comment.