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back to article FBI brass ask Google, Facebook to expand wiretaps

Top officials from the FBI traveled to Silicon Valley on Tuesday to persuade Facebook and Google executives to support a proposal that would make it easier for law enforcement to wiretap the companies' users. FBI Director Robert Mueller III and General Counsel Valerie Caproni were scheduled to meet with “managers of several …

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Backdoor everything?

So they want a backdoor built into everything, and give the FBI the key? No doubt they will say they can't tell anyone that there is a backdoor, and they will be able to keep the key secret and no one will be able to find the backdoor...

Are they going to make Cisco backdoor their VPN products? Who outside of the US will use it them?

Open source software might be a bit difficult to backdoor.

If the FBI have a key, everyone is going to want one too.

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Title goes here

What happenes when the backdoor is discovered by a hostile entity and they are able to bypass all your encryption and security ?

Also my contents insurance is void if i leave my backdoor open, how does this compare :)

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Threatens liberty, doesn't threaten the bad guys.

It's one thing for common carriers to be required to allow tapping into their own networks for law-enforcement purposes, quite another to dictate what individual parties can and cannot do with their own communications.

Does anyone think for a moment that serious crims are going to be impeded by this? Maybe some penny-ante sorts whose crimes don't amount to much and who can't be bothered doing their homework will be bothered if Skype has a back door, but that's about all.

Leakproof encryption tools will not go away, and anyone with even a hint of determination will find them.

Then there are open-source communication applications, from Thunderbird to Pidgin. The only way to to back-door them is to ban them outright. How far do you think that idea would fly? All of them by nature have the capacity for encryption, if not in a current implementation (like Enigmail for Mozilla), then potentially.

When encryption is outlawed, only outlaws will use encryption.

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FAIL

It's for your own good

You KNOW the government would never trample your rights as a citizen.

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Welcome

Cat n mouse

With strong encryption within everyone's reach these days its just going to be a cat and mouse game, clever people will just develop their own communication software with built in encryption, good luck wire tapping all of them, this appears to just be an excuse to watch the sheep

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FAIL

They still dont quite get the whole digital age, do they

So, how does this work when the software/applications are written outside of the US?

I don't see how this would actually make a difference?

If they tap FB and that, I doubt international criminals are using it.

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Black Helicopters

This title intentionally left blank

Companies outside the USA that make encrypting applications or provide encryption services will be required to have an office in the USA capable of decrypting their encrypted stuff on demand. Otherwise they will not be allowed to do business in the USA.

It's the law, folks. Comes in force on 1st of January, 2013, like it or not.

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Go

Good to know

Gives me the appropriate time to leave here for good.

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Anonymous Coward

Much good that will do with FOSS code and Apps

Remember Phil Zimmerman,

This will just result in FOSS apps with strong encryption and no backdropping being available for all worldwide from places that still respect search and siezure limits..

As to hardware based crypto this will be yet another blow to US manufacturers when everyone sources hardware from countries that don't mandate backdoors

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Awesome!

Great idea! Let's kill the encryption industry! I can see the future ads now ... "PGP: Pretty Good Privacy, but not likely to get any better than that, because there are cracking keys all over the place!"

Ahhh. I love the smell of totalitarianism in the morning.

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Big Brother

@"have a way to unscramble encrypted communications"

Unscramble encrypted communications? ... Oh great, how long before the law mandates access to all our data?! ... leave our passwords with the (Police) State ... If this wasn't so serious it would be surreal, like watching a scifi film of a growing global Police State?!

Privacy? ... it seems that was a pre-21st century concept, simply due to the lack of a technical way to systematically violate everyone privacy. Now we have the technology, they increasingly move to want the ability to spy on us all without end.

Well at least the Police State builders in the US won't have any problems pushing this through over here, as our MP's would be more than happy to roll over and force the law changes through regardless of which party is in power at the time. (As they unfortunately keep showing). After all our MP's in all parties appear to be desperate to be leading the world in the creation of a Police State.

Interesting how its the countries that keep reminding us we are all free, which are actually the fastest growing Police States. In hindsight, it makes sense they have to keep reminding us, otherwise we may see the truth. :(

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Gold badge
FAIL

Cool - let's just kill the US industry overnight

This is a worse idea than the Clipper chip, they just don't learn, do they? It means no single piece of US kit is going to be trusted, no US service will be considered trustworthy.

However, they also know that takes time. I mean, if you can get so many people to sign up to Facebook or Google services, clearly the average end user couldn't care less.

Until it goes wrong.

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Black Helicopters

err

Have they ever been trustable ?

Ever since the cold war all comms are under surveillance. Now they rape their citizens ( TSA )

and ask that everyone's data and net activities be under surveillance. Concentration of data in the US of all of the rest of the world's activity and doings is bad for the world. Facebook need to be replaced by an entity outside the US control and so is Google. Unless you all agree we just have to let the US play in our data cause they're fine folks with no bad intentions. Bull .

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Faith

The government being able to unscramble Skype and Google would be an inconvenience but I have faith that, as soon as enough people are convinced that this is happening (I'm pretty sure it's already happening to some extent) we'll see - popping up all over the place - encryption tools that the govies can't crack.

Want to prevent the government reading your emails to NaughtyWhipMistress? Just buy this wonderful application! Yes indeed, Scrooyoogovie instant encryption could save you hours of interrogation!

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Alert

The Govt just uses this equation...

(Benefit / Cost) (total surveillance) > Risk of ruining entire economy (if data ever leaked to enemy)

which solves to:

(Zero / Loads) (crap idea) > Total inevitability

which solves to:

(Infinitely crap idea) = Govt policy

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Anonymous Coward

can't say this often enough

The open source argument is ok, so long as you can check /everything/.

Icluding the processor microcode.

see http://cm.bell-labs.com/who/ken/trust.html

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Linux

"..developers of email, instant-messaging and voice-over-internet-protocol applications.."

I employ and sometimes write back-end email and network encryption utility schemes, specifically, to prevent "Big Brother" from spying on me. So, uh.. NO. I will not comply with such a request, mandate, or law. Ever.

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Silver badge
Stop

Note: "abused by rogue regimes to spy on US citizens"

This perfect fit for "rogue regimes' IS the US.

The NSA, those guys who own the satellite antenna farm at Menwith Hill spy base near Harrogate in North Yorkshire < http://www.google.com.vn/search?q=nsa%2C+menwith%2C+yorkshire >, already has taps into almost every cell system world-wide < http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_telephone_tapping_case_2004-2005 > including those in the USA.

The US Constitution that is so revered by everyone there except for politicians and the security people prohibits spying on citizens. Notwithstanding the so-called Patriot Act allows this tapping even though it is illegal.

Obviously everyone should start inputting 'terrorist' type questions so that the kooks will waste their time chasing down false leads. Same for VOIP or text messaging and use proxies so they waste time tracking from where the call terminates.

The only satisfying thing is in knowing that this business is a failure as many so called acts of 'terrorism' continue unabated and undetected prior to the fact, proving that this waste of money can never succeed.

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Joke

If you've got something to hide...

...you've got something to lose...

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Unhappy

Is the right to privacy ...

sufficient?

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This post has been deleted by its author

why

they need a backdoor to faceache and the likes beats me.

those nerks are already broadcasting to the world + dog.

if its a matter of wanting to read private messages, then surely that could be satisfied with existing laws.

or perhaps they wish to gather information for their corporate owners to better target advertising.

im a bit puzzled by all this.

@JaitcH ; "Obviously everyone should start inputting 'terrorist' type questions so that the kooks will waste their time chasing down false leads."

i already do this with phone calls, hoping that the snoops will have a fit every call i make/recieve.

just using a few choice words should do the trick.

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The FB-eye.

Ummmm if they are into incessantly selling us this selling us the "FBI and CIA" are the good guys supplied by the Hollyweird propaganda - where THEY are out to save us all from THEM type movies..

IF the FB-eye are so up front, how come George W. Bush and his cronies are NOT strung up Mussolini style in the town square?

Meanwhile the war criminal sits there with his idiot grin selling his book made of his press secretary cuttings.

Thumbs down for the FBI - they are only vested in their own corporate interests.

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US gov = big corps

It's not really an FBI problem - the US has the best government that can be (and has been) bought. Just look at the laws that get passed (rather than what the politicians say) - the vast majority fall into one of two categories:

1) Benefit some big corp(s) that have their bought congressmen pushing it through.

2) Security theater measures to give the illusion of security (without actually offering any).

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The Rock

Land of the glory, land of the free

Free means you're for nothing

And nothing means you're free

F. Miller

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WTF?

Facebook?

This seems a bit pointless for facebook, given that they force everything except logins to be sent in plaintext.

Also didn't they try pushing the whole enforced key escrow thing in the 90s only to realise it wouldn't stop criminals encrypting stuff but would potentially destroy the market for US-developed encryption software?

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