The bill's authors are Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee.

'Lawful access' bill would allow feds to legally bust into encrypted devices

Treehouse's picture

Theirs first!


traveler's picture

The bill is available here

The bill is available here link

I've not yet read the bill. But I am generally alarmed that Bush, then Obama, have created the infrastructure for a police state, which the Obama administration, as a minimum, was using aggressively.

The world has gotten along apprehending and prosecuting criminals for ages without having to have the ability to spy on, track, and monitor every person in society.

West Germans recoiled in horror at the East German secret police keeping extensive dossiers on their citizens. We're way past that, with the feds now tracking every single purchase, our medical care, bank accounts, locations, phone calls, e-mails, our web-browsing, etc.

And I'm simply not convinced we need that now-operational, now-operating facility operating in a free country.

traveler's picture

I read most of it.

The highlights, as I read it, would require makers of operating systems and electronic consumer devices to incorporate the ability to decrypt any encrypted information. Providers of communications services would be required to guarantee an ability to secretly stream your decrypted communications to law enforcement in real time.

There's a "Prize Competition" (sect. 603), establishing a prize to be awarded to whomever comes up with the best answer to their requirements.

They make a good argument that the Fourth Amendment has always allowed the government to storm your house and seize your documents, provided they first obtain a court order. I guess I'm fine with that--you're allowed to storm in with a warrant and grab someone's phone.

But the Fourth Amendment never said the government could force third parties to copy and collect your private communications, records, and effects; nor does the Fourth Amendment give them the right to compel assistance in decoding obviously private information, nor to plant surveillance in your devices, nor monitor and capture your communications, not without first getting a warrant.

I'm against all of that.

If the British had had this capability and used it against Paul Revere, America wouldn't exist.

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