Content-type: text/html Downes.ca ~ Stephen's Web ~ Kyoto Statement on End-To-End Encryption

Stephen Downes

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End to End Encryption (E2EE) or 'strong' encryption is the idea that communications between two people should be fully encrypted, that is, encrypted such that there is no way for any third party to intercept the data. It's in the news these days because the CEO of Signal, Meredith Whittaker, said the E2EE compny will not comply with KYC (Know Your Customer) laws being proposed in India and elsewhere. Here we have a statement from the Global Encryption Coalition in favour of strong E2EE. I have mixed feelings about laws supporting so-called "backdoors" used by law enforcement. There is a genuine purpose, such as putting financial criminals behind bars. The problem is, backdoors are never limited to legitimate purposes; both state and non-state actors gain acccess to them and then nobody is safe. Some argue there is a 'right' to E2EE but even in the U.S., where this argument originates, even rights have a limit. There's no middle ground, though, and that's a problem.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
stephen@downes.ca

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Last Updated: May 29, 2024 10:46 p.m.

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