- Ohio KKK rally met with massive counter-protest and witty signs from local businesses Saturday 5:06 PM
- Guy who said he stole drugs from MS-13 now says viral story is fake Saturday 4:07 PM
- Financial service company left 885 million private records exposed online Saturday 3:13 PM
- Sasha Obama went to prom and Twitter is delighted with the photos Saturday 2:22 PM
- Jon Voight says Trump is the greatest president since Lincoln in Twitter videos Saturday 1:31 PM
- #DeleteFacebook gains momentum after the platform refused to remove doctored Nancy Pelosi videos Saturday 11:58 AM
- ‘Game of Thrones’ failed women—and it’s a shame on its legacy Saturday 7:40 AM
- How to use Tor, the network that lets you browse the web anonymously Saturday 7:30 AM
- How to live stream Devin Haney vs. Antonio Moran on DAZN Saturday 7:00 AM
- Trump’s transphobic policies are disgusting—but they aren’t new Saturday 6:30 AM
- How to watch the Copa del Rey Final online for free Saturday 5:45 AM
- How to watch the DFB-Pokal final for free Saturday 5:30 AM
- Curvy Wife Guy drops music video for rap song ‘Chubby Sexy’ Friday 7:33 PM
- A ‘Black Mirror’-inspired miniseries is coming to YouTube via Netflix Latin America Friday 5:56 PM
- Kanye West appears on David Letterman’s Netflix show to talk Trump, TMZ, and Drake Friday 3:27 PM
The next great partisan battle in Congress is upon us.
Encryption aids terrorists by giving them “a free zone by which to recruit, radicalize, plot, and plan” online, Michael Steinbach, assistant director of the FBI’s counter-terrorism division, argued in front of the House Homeland Security Committee.
Steinbach echoed FBI director James Comey’s calls to expand the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act in order to require access to encrypted mobile phone data in the same way that telecom carriers build legal wiretap capabilities into phone networks in the U.S.
“We’re not talking about large-scale surveillance techniques,” Steinbach said. “We’re not looking at going through a backdoor or being nefarious. We’re talking about going to the company and asking for their assistance.”
The congressional hearing was called “Terrorism Gone Viral.” On Tuesday, Apple’s Cook called “the battle over encryption” an “attack on our civil liberties.”
“Some in Washington are hoping to undermine the ability of ordinary citizens to encrypt their data,” Cook said. He elaborated:
If you put a key under the mat for the cops, a burglar can find it, too. Criminals are using every technology tool at their disposal to hack into people’s accounts. If they know there’s a key hidden somewhere, they won’t stop until they find it.
Removing encryption tools from our products altogether, as some in Washington would like us to do, would only hurt law-abiding citizens who rely on us to protect their data. The bad guys will still encrypt; it’s easy to do and readily available.
Expect this battle—known as “the new crypto wars”—to continue to pop up and heat up.
The FBI’s push for backdoors into encryption technology is continuously clashing with Silicon Valley’s resistance.
This is a conflict that only Congress can decide. After the congressional strife over surveillance in the Patriot Act, it seems clear that encryption could be the next acute partisan collision over technology in Washington, D.C.
Photo via Kevin Jaako/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)
Patrick Howell O'Neill is a notable cybersecurity reporter whose work has focused on the dark net, national security, and law enforcement. A former senior writer at the Daily Dot, O'Neill joined CyberScoop in October 2016. I am a cybersecurity journalist at CyberScoop. I cover the security industry, national security and law enforcement.