Skip to comments.CODEVILLA: Government’s secret backdoor to your email
Posted on 01/20/2014 12:26:25 PM PST by ransomnote
The NSA orchestrated Internet vulnerabilities against the directive of Congress
Every child learns not to touch a neighbors mailbox. Thats a federal crime, hes told, and for good reason. However, the transactions and love-hate letters that used to go through physical mailboxes now go through electronic ones. The U.S. government cannot protect their privacy. What the laws and customs that surround the U.S. mail once did is now done by encryption. Governments own role is problematic, because many of its various agencies want to look into our mailboxes by defeating encryption.
We can understand how serious a matter this is by imagining what this country would have become if federal law, while prohibiting neighbors from rifling through each others mailboxes, had specifically allowed federal agencies to do so. America would have developed a system of clandestine communications, or it would have become East Germany writ large.
That is why the National Security Agencys collection of Internet traffic combined with what appears to have been the acquisition of backdoor access to common encryption systems is such a big deal. The Presidential Panel on NSA surveillance dealt with this matter with words so few and so pregnant with meaning that they did not catch the publics attention, to wit: Encryption is an essential basis for trust on the Internet. Accordingly, the panel recommended that the NSA cease efforts to undermine its integrity.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
If Obama were smart he would change the name of the NSA to the PNSA. “Patriot” as in Bush’s Patriot Act. Most “conservatives” would fall into line.
Well, now at least someone will be reading my email. I never look at it unless something I ordered online is late.
Hey NSA, read this! (poster makes a one-handed gesture of defiance, featuring one finger raised prominently over the others.)
Nut-job Conspiracy Theory Ping!
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you realize this is ‘free republic’ ... right? you realize that the US is (supposed to be) a representative republic based around small govt, right? you realize that ‘conservatives’ prefer small govt, not large govt... right? and that conservatives are usually in favor of military in order to protect and preserve their lifestyle, right?
the patriot act during wartime was ok with conservatives as it was used to find and remove potential threats. as those threats are no longer a concern, the patriot act itself would no longer be needed and should be removed.
this is why the conservative press has issues with all the spying today
E-mail by nature is about as secure as a penny dish at a local store. A good rule of thumb is to not put anything in an email that you wouldn’t put on a postcard.
So yet another thing we can thank the government for is all that spam in your inbox.
It’s only as secure as a postcard because people don’t bother to use cryptographic tools that are readily available.
> Its only as secure as a postcard because people dont bother to use cryptographic tools that are readily available.
True, but explaining that (and the limits of encryption) required a bit more effort that a two-sentence post.
How about the universal ID cards that so many self-described conservatives are demanding along with more red tape against getting drivers’ licenses? If there’s concern about a foreign horde rushing in to sway an election, why are immigration policies being turned to focus on easily admitting wealthy foreigners and slaves and against U.S. citizens’ relatives eager to assimilate (the conservative way)?
Most self-described conservatives are also getting incomes directly or indirectly from the overspending in various levels of government. There are very few real conservatives in politics, and even they will be antipolitical before long. By our Fourth Amendment, any kind of personal mail should be private. A war against foreign enemies cannot be won by way of police work and abolitions of freedoms at home.
why am I not surprised??
True enough SA. It's something I've been giving some thought to. Every time I start writing something up though, it just seems to go on and on. That seems to happen to me more as I've gotten older. :-)
What's really getting to me about the entire topic though is that no matter what is said, no matter how far the government flushes the 1st,4th and 5th amendments down the drain, people are just simply too lazy to be able to handle public key cryptography. Can you imagine the average person out there could handle properly securing his private keyring? These are the same folk, who can't even figure out what a directory structure is on a computer, and we want them to take enough care, that they wouldn't end up emailing their private keyring to any moron who asked for it? That's not to mention the problem of key expiration, and revokation.
OTOH, even if you wanted strong crypro on your phone, would you really trust it not to rat you out to the NSA the first chance it got? I know that I don't really trust my smartphone.