Thursday, April 30, 2015

Homeland Security wants less Encryption

The full text of the speech given by the Remarks by Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson at the RSA Conference 2015 can be found here. I think it is very telling where Homeland Security is from this small except:

"Now, finally, I have an ask: for your indulgence and your understanding on the subject of encryption. 
The Department of Homeland Security has both the cybersecurity mission and a law enforcement/counterterrorism mission for the American people. We have feet in both camps. I therefore believe I have a good perspective on this issue. 
The current course we are on, toward deeper and deeper encryption in response to the demands of the marketplace, is one that presents real challenges for those in law enforcement and national security.
Let me be clear: I understand the importance of what encryption brings to privacy. But, imagine the problems if, well after the advent of the telephone, the warrant authority of the government to investigate crime had extended only to the U.S. mail.
Our inability to access encrypted information poses public safety challenges. 
In fact, encryption is making it harder for your government to find criminal activity, and potential terrorist activity. 
We in government know that a solution to this dilemma must take full account of the privacy rights and expectations of the American public, the state of the technology, and the cybersecurity of American businesses."
First of all, uh, no. Second, are you kidding? The government has mountains of information in the form of metadata that they need absolutly no warrant for. They want back doors which make the encryption pointless. Maybe it's time some smart Silicon Valley engineers work for them rather than just VPs and Execs getting cushy jobs. Just sayin'. If other industries can do it like Monsonto with the FDA why not us?

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