Senate Encryption Bill Introduced | “Effectively Rendering End-to-End Encryption Illegal”

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Wednesday April 13th, Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul (R-Texas) and Senate Intelligence Committee member Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) announced a bill which would substantial weaken encryption rights and establish a special congressional commission to address privacy issues. In a personal statement on his web site regarding this legislation entitled “A Sensible Answer To Encryption” Senator Warner says he is proposing “an idea for a lengthy but doable way to satisfy both privacy and security concerns” which would “bridge the gap between government-wary technophiles and security hawks.

The bill has been introduced with bi-partisan support and several front running candidates on both sides of the isle, such as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton both support this legislation. Though President Obama made national headlines last week when he refusing to support legislation which would require tech companies to unlock encryption on demand, the bill is expected by many industry insiders to pass into law.

According the authors, Feinstein & Burr, the one of the purposes of this bill is to “set up a commission made up of members of the tech community, privacy advocates, and the law enforcement and intelligence communities to hash out a solution. That commission would be tasked with review of what law enforcement officials face when they are denied access to encrypted communications, even with a court order.” The Senators explain that their proposal is “appealing to people from both law enforcement and tech.” Pointing out that “When the two previewed their bill last month, they said it’s most important for the two communities that disagree so intensely over encryption to sit down and discuss how to move forward.

A week before the bill was formally introduced its contented were leaked to the media and the language of the document has had tech experts around the world in an uproar ever since. Though the bill calls for a committee to ‘hash out difference of opinions’ about encryption, this means nothing as the meat of the essentially brings an immediate end to encryption rights. Reference the Senators statements above, ‘when the two sides met to review the bill last month they intensely disagreed over encryption rights’. Since then literally nothing has changed, the two sides continue to disagree and all this committee does is provide a closed room for privacy experts to ‘cry foul’ while the government strips away our right to privacy from under our feet.

As Jenna McLaughlin of The Intercept writesThe bill would force technology companies to either decrypt the contents of their customers’ communications for law enforcement, or hack into their own products to do so — effectively rendering illegal the end-to-end encryption currently offered by some of the heaviest hitters in the business, like Apple, Facebook, Google, and now WhatsApp.

In a statement to The Intercept via email Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) says: “This legislation says a company can design what they want their back door to look like, but it would definitely require them to build a back door. For the first time in America, companies who want to provide their customers with stronger security would not have that choice – they would be required to decide how to weaken their products to make you less safe.

Catalin Cimpanu of Softpedia News writesThe bill basically asks companies to use weaker encryption which they could break whenever authorities get a court order and come calling for data.” Going on to add that the legislation requires “companies should provide technical assistance in decrypting data on demand. Practically, the two senators drafted a bill that the FBI and other totalitarian states would have loved. The bill looks something you would have expected China’s leadership to approve.

As Matthew Green of Johns Hopkins University has Tweeted out “It’s not hard to see why the White House declined to endorse Feinstein-Burr. They took a complex issue, arrived at the most naive solution….the bill is pretty much as clueless and unworkable as I expected it would be.

Please Read The Leaked Encryption Legislation For Yourself Here: https://josephhall.org/f0eabaa89b8ee38577bf7d0fd50ddf0d58ecd27a/307378123-Burr-Encryption-Bill-Discussion-Draft.pdf

43,000 Have Already Pledged – Please Sign Petition to End This Anti-Encryption Bill: http://act.credoaction.com/sign/encryption/


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5 COMMENTS

  1. This will not fix ANYTHING. Criminals are not affected because they disobey the law anyways. The government and its branches are meant to stablize the economy, not to tell business how to run themselves. All this bill will do is push more people into the dark net and possibly will start an uprising. And people are figuring out that peaceful protesting gets nowhere fast. The gov is turning the usa into a communist country where you are told what, when, and how and slam you in prison for questioning it. The gov is just going to create more criminals. That and companies are going to leave the USA to escape these stupid bills being passed. We need to dismiss all those that are currently in the gov and its branches and elect those WE THE PEOPLE want, not what polititions want. … The gov is going to end up facing a battle against the entire human population and without a doubt there will be violence. The US gov is just about finished.

  2. then they have to remember that the CIA, NSA, FBI and so on can not use encryption them self without braking the law. so they just fucked them self. happy hacking, no more decryption of data. steal and leak, steal and leak

  3. gpio breakout hardware firewall… minimum requirements secure features white protocol… filetypes protocols datatypes and structures… every bit is information… you can clean the information when you gather it from the internet with the cheapest computers on the web… high and low energies sources and existences coherencies… your place in the universe…

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