Digital Insurgency

Where Surveillance, Encryption & Privacy Collide

"The answer will come through public debate through unfortunate cases and a new batch of laws. And I can only see that in ending up in one place; because seeing what I have on security and how unacceptable it is in a modern society for the security of the mass of the population to be jeopardised, I can’t see that an absolute right to privacy can with stand the pressure of argument and events over the coming years," said Hague.

This is a UK Foreign Secretary speaking, but these exact sentiments have been expressed by law enforcement agencies at every level in the US. This is the single reason that THE FUNDAMENTAL DEBATE of the next 10-20 years will be encryption and privacy versus state surveillance.

Law enforcement will position this as ensuring that we do not have undetected conversations between nefarious actors, but we have those EVERY SINGLE DAY through face-to-face meetings, coded conversations, etc. The notion that banning encryption or requiring backdoors will end undetected conversations is nonsense.

In the meantime, there comes news that even without these backdoors someone is selling 32 million Twitter passwords on the dark web and a report from IBM that indicates 60% of cyber attacks were an inside job.

The constant drumbeat of hacked services and compromised personal data will be made FAR, FAR worse with government’s bungling ham-handed approach to surveillance as ‘malicious insiders’ (as IBM calls them) from government agencies will have access to personal conversations. And if you don’t think that will happen, just look at the 41 Secret Service agents being reprimanded for illegally accessing a Congressman’s personal data because they didn’t like what he had to say about their agency.

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