Death of Public-Key Encryption

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Death of Public-Key Encryption

Postby Yogi » 25 Jul 2013, 18:38

The linked article reveals nothing new but is interesting in that it puts the whole concept of digital surveillance into one picture. Unfortunately it's not a pretty picture. If you ever used a browser (and how else would you get here?) you have most likely downloaded something that was verified by using a public key. The technique is asymmetrical, i.e., the sender has a key to encrypt and the receiver has a different key to decrypt. They both need the public key in order to read the encrypted data. Apparently the data miners who work for big government are now demanding the "master" keys from Internet firms. Having the master keys means that the surveillance can be done at the major Internet switch points without a need to tap into any given service.

If you are convinced such a demand is necessary to combat things such as terrorism and cyber attacks from foreign countries, then you don't mind giving away the keys. Just keep in mind that if our government has the keys, then you can rest assured that other governments have them too, not to mention those notorious hackers.

The arguments in the article by Lauren Weinstein are an interesting read by themselves, but I find the revelations regarding the depth of the surveillance going on right now to be blood chilling. Weinstein's solution to all this is to come up with a better way to encrypt data, Good luck with that.

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