23 February 2020

23 February 2020


 23 February 12020 is Carnival Sunday. I read in the news that the Trump administration—like those before it—is upset by the existence of encrypted messages that can’t be intercepted and read by the authorities. Such “right-to-tap” legislation is now considered standard for voice communication for some reason, but there is software out there that makes it impossible (for all practical purposes) to decrypt digital data. Government officials (like Clay Anderson of Humphreys County Tennessee) insist that ordinary citizens don’t need “that kind of encryption”. As the FBI’s Darrin Jones explains, lack of privacy for us commoners makes it easier for government officials like him to hunt down criminals, and we should just accept that. Secure encryption offers “some small incremental increase in security in … messaging … but I have to accept the premise that there are going to be people that are victims? No, I can’t go there.” And if the government were allowed to install small cameras in every room of every building in America I’m sure it would make solving some crimes simpler, but to give up privacy across the board? No, I can’t go there.

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