White Paper Points Out Just How Irresponsible 'Responsible Encryption' Is

from the a-hole-for-one-is-a-hole-for-all dept

In recent months, both Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director 
Christopher Wray have been calling for holes in encryption law enforcement can 
drive a warrant through. Both have no idea how this can be accomplished, but 
both are reasonably sure tech companies can figure it out for them. And if some 
sort of key escrow makes encryption less secure than it is now, so be it. 
Whatever minimal gains in access law enforcement obtains will apparently offset 
the damage done by key leaks or criminal exploitation of a 
deliberately-weakened system.

Cryptography expert Riana Pfefferkorn has released a white paper [PDF] 
examining the feasibility of the vague requests made by Rosenstein and Wray. 
Their preferred term is "responsible encryption" -- a term that allows them to 
step around landmines like "encryption backdoors" or "we're making encryption 
worse for everyone!" Her paper shows "responsible encryption" is anything but. 
And, even if implemented, it will result in far less access (and far more 
nefarious exploitation) than Rosenstein and Wray think.

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