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The encryption debate explained so simply, your dog could understand it
This is about more than just terrorists and criminals. It’s about you, too.
If you’ve spent anytime on the Internet in the past month, you’ve probably heard a lot about encryption—maybe more than you’d like.
If you talk to people who keep tabs on the major battles of the Internet era, however, encryption couldn’t be more important—not only to Apple’s executives, members of Congress, or ISIS jihadists, but anyone who has a smartphone, buys things on Amazon, uses online banking, or has business files that need to stay secure.
The very nature of encryption—using mathematical algorithms to scramble and unscramble data (like an email or a credit card number sent over the Internet)—is inherently dense. And because it’s often talked about these days in the context of terrorists and murders, it can be difficult to understand what the ongoing legal fight over strong encryption means for regular, law-abiding people.
Enter explainer extraordinaire CGP Grey (not to be confused with PGP encryption). With the help of his signature illustrations, CGP Grey lays out the encryption debate in a such a clear way that anyone could understand it—and we mean anyone.
So, the next time someone asks “What’s up with this whole encryption thing?” you’ll know exactly the right answer—and maybe even want to get in on the fight.
Andrew Couts is the former editor of Layer 8, a section dedicated to the intersection of the Internet and the state—and the gaps in between. Prior to the Daily Dot, Couts served as features editor and features writer for Digital Trends, associate editor of TheWeek.com, and associate editor at Maxim magazine. When he’s not working, Couts can be found hiking with his German shepherds or blasting around on motorcycles.