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Cybersecurity & Standards, Government Surveillance, Privacy & Data

Paris Attacks Raise Encryption as Key Issue to 2016 Elections


The weekend’s mass shootings and suicide bombings in France — together with the downing of a Russian airliner and a pair of suicide bombings in Beirut — have renewed calls for technology companies to provide government officials back-door access to encrypted communications on smartphones and messaging apps.

As Re/code noted yesterday, technology giants like Apple, Google and Facebook have pushed back against such measures, arguing that leaving holes in customers’ data encryption, no matter how well intentioned, would make them more vulnerable to hacking and cybercrime without necessarily making them safer.

“When we talk about undermining encryption, it’s got a bit of superficial appeal. Everyone wants to do something after an attack. The reality is that this would be a very bad thing from a security point of view,” Calabrese said. “Also, encryption tools are available worldwide. There’s literally nothing that the U.S. could do to keep a terrorist from acquiring an encryption communications technology and using it. So none of the laws would do anything except undermine everyday users’ security.”

Full story here.