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Thread: Publicly affirm your support for strong encryption.

  1. #1
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    Publicly affirm your support for strong encryption.

    If you live in the US I encourage you to sign a We the People petition to the President.

    Last week, the media reported that the White House has been examining proposals that weaken encryption and give the government a backdoor to access your data.

    Software backdoors …

    • Undermine the US economy, estimates are that due to NSA spying revelations the tech sector will lose 60B due to foreign business going elsewhere
    • Are counterproductive, taking effort from intelligence gathering on legitimate targets to pointlessly spying on US citizens
    • Undermines the 1st amendment, as without true privacy there can be no free speech (which is why dictatorships spy on their citizens)
    • Backdoors aren’t just open to NSA hackers, but gives Foreign governments an opening too (they’re just as good as we are)
    • Are fundamentally anti-American, we’re supposed to be the most trustworthy country, aren’t we?


    Encryption with backdoors isn’t encryption.

  2. #2
    singularity precursor Limey's Avatar
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    Minister of Love Roger Mexico's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    Are fundamentally anti-American, we’re supposed to be the most trustworthy country, aren’t we?
    Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!


    The rest I agree with.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ptah View Post
    No history, no exposition, no anecdote or argument changes the invariant: we are all human beings, and some humans are idiots.

  4. #4
    a cantori Perdix's Avatar
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    I work on ecc25519 and AES512>Blowfish encryption programs for communications purposes on a daily basis... I'll affirm my support in code. These petitions piss me off... oh? You're going to get 10 mil signatures, guess what? That means jack shit to NSA/GCHQ. We need to get more coders working on asymmetric cryptography handshakes and services like TOR.

    Any laws passed in the US are immediately ignored by covert groups, such as the equation group, who don't give a flying fuck about the law because they're backed by the largest military in the world, and work off book.

    Sorry... petitions kinda piss me off in a not dissimilar way to occupy movements... really? You actually think you're going to change anything?

  5. #5
    Now we know... Asteroids Champion ACow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Mexico View Post
    Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!


    The rest I agree with.
    I didn't want to say anything because I feel my (valid) observations make me come across as specifically anti-American, but I can't believe that was written with a straight face...

    Is the next petition going to involve a appeal to trust in a Vatican themed child care centre?

  6. #6
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    I work on ecc25519 and AES512>Blowfish encryption programs for communications purposes on a daily basis... I'll affirm my support in code. These petitions piss me off... oh? You're going to get 10 mil signatures, guess what? That means jack shit to NSA/GCHQ. We need to get more coders working on asymmetric cryptography handshakes and services like TOR.
    Agree

    Any laws passed in the US are immediately ignored by covert groups, such as the equation group, who don't give a flying fuck about the law because they're backed by the largest military in the world, and work off book.

    Sorry... petitions kinda piss me off in a not dissimilar way to occupy movements... really? You actually think you're going to change anything?
    Yes they do actually. Proof example is when the FDA attempted to refine what "organic" meant. The public freaked, and they backpedaled. As the links above show, and many other examples, is that they fear 'blowback', which is their word for public outcry against these ideas.

    Security is a wall that is never perfect on either side, so you make it as high as you can. Every bit helps, including plain old civic activism.

  7. #7
    a cantori Perdix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    Yes they do actually. Proof example is when the FDA attempted to refine what "organic" meant. The public freaked, and they backpedaled. As the links above show, and many other examples, is that they fear 'blowback', which is their word for public outcry against these ideas.

    Security is a wall that is never perfect on either side, so you make it as high as you can. Every bit helps, including plain old civic activism.
    Normally they do, but not when it comes to a subject like data security. The FDA example is a false analogy, I don't think the general populace care enough about their own data security to cause an uproar. Look at what some people post on facebook, if you ever had one.

    My underlying point is the only way to have effective asymmetric/symmetric encryption is to stay one step ahead and develop/refine algorithms that don't have backdoors and are mathematically sound. To go one step further I think current computer hardware/firmware is incredibly insecure, and that defeats the entire purpose of strong encryption algorithms. Moving forward, we shouldn't need a gentlemen's agreement on encryption, it should just be standard, and decentralized.

    Even if this passes like I said, groups such as "The Equation Group" don't give a flying fuck about the law, or a petition. They will always try to invent new ways to breach your systems without regard for written law.

  8. #8
    fluff2fluff GnarlFox's Avatar
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    Well yeah, but when it's done illegally the data is still restricted as to how it can be used. Even if it's only a slight deterent, it still helps.
    The idea that there is more is essential to our humanity.

  9. #9
    Sysop Ptah's Avatar
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    I care even less about whether petitions make any difference than that petitions exist whatsoever, when it comes to something amiss about the world I'd like to contribute toward fixing.

    That aside, I agree there's a problem that needs to be addressed. I suppose my means of addressing it, should I get irked enough so as to be motivated as such, would be to actually contribute (to) code which tightens the game of security athwart snooping or interventions or backdoors or whatever. Let that work stand as my statement, as against stomping my foot or signing a petition.

    But since it hasn't so motivated me (that is, it hasn't won out against a field of much stronger interests and concerns), and I since don't have or care to develop the specialized skill set necessary to directly contribute to solutions, and since petitions register as near-zeros in interest and/or estimated effectiveness -- except by accident, perhaps (ignorance via apathy admitted, of course)... doing nothing is where it stays for me, for now. Essentially: "Shit sucks", *throws hands up, can't do anything about it*, "...", *moves on*

  10. #10
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    Normally they do, but not when it comes to a subject like data security. The FDA example is a false analogy, I don't think the general populace care enough about their own data security to cause an uproar. Look at what some people post on facebook, if you ever had one.
    I don't see how the FDA example is a false analogy, for one thing it's not an analogy. It's an example of how public lobbying can make a difference in policy.
    My underlying point is the only way to have effective asymmetric/symmetric encryption is to stay one step ahead and develop/refine algorithms that don't have backdoors and are mathematically sound. To go one step further I think current computer hardware/firmware is incredibly insecure, and that defeats the entire purpose of strong encryption algorithms. Moving forward, we shouldn't need a gentlemen's agreement on encryption, it should just be standard, and decentralized.
    Yes I agree to this as I indicated earlier

    Even if this passes like I said, groups such as "The Equation Group" don't give a flying fuck about the law, or a petition. They will always try to invent new ways to breach your systems without regard for written law.
    Hmm, I don't think you understand what this is, there's nothing "to pass". All the petition is doing is asking Obama to make a public statement on backdoors, which is the right approach (this was drafted by Google, EFF, etc). With 100k signatures he either has to say "I support backdoors", or "I don't support backdoors" or some weaselly position that says neither, but clearly indicates that he won't make a real statement, so therefore supports backdoors.

    The US Democracy is for the people and by the people, since 9/11 there's been a unfortunate trend for people to say "you can't do anything", "I have nothing to hide", "We need to fight the enemy", etc. This is the kind of rhetoric I heard coming out of dictatorship regimes when I was growing up. Distressing to see that in my lifetime it's come to our shores, because the problem is that it's a form of obedience training and behavior control.

    In the U.S. the proper public response is to push back, that's how our system works. True privacy is a technological solution, I agree, but we need not to get into the habit of just throwing up our hands and keeping quiet, otherwise that becomes the norm (boiling frog problem).

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