Harvard study confirms Tim Cook is right = encryption bans and backdoors won’t work

Efforts by the FBI and certain lawmakers seeking to ban Apple and other U.S. companies from selling products with real encryption will not be effective, note researchers in a study citing 865 encryption products already available in 55 countries — two thirds of which originate outside the U.S.

❝The study for Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society, conducted by cryptography expert Bruce Schneier and colleagues Kathleen Seidel and Saranya Vijayakumar, surveyed the availability of encryption products worldwide, compiling findings that make it clear that U.S. laws to weaken domestic encryption wouldn’t stop malicious users from obtaining foreign encryption, but would put U.S. firms at a competitive disadvantage.

Schneier noted that an earlier form of the same findings were published back in 1999, when the Federal Government was considering whether to continue classifying strong encryption as a “munition” banned for export outside the U.S…

Now, do we expect real findings to mean a damned thing to politicians and obedience pimps?

Seventeen years later, an updated version of the same survey discovered 546 foreign encryption products, “44% of which are free,” and “34% are open source.”

It noted, “there is no difference in the advertised strength of encryption products produced in or outside the US. Both domestic and foreign encryption products regularly use strong published encryption algorithms such as AES. Smaller companies, both domestic and foreign, are prone to use their own proprietary algorithms.”

The report added, “some encryption products are jurisdictionally agile. They have source code stored in multiple jurisdictions simultaneously, or their services are offered from servers in multiple jurisdictions. Some organizations can change jurisdictions, effectively moving to countries with more favorable laws…”

❝”Any mandatory backdoor will be ineffective simply because the marketplace is so international. Yes, it will catch criminals who are too stupid to realize that their security products have been backdoored or too lazy to switch to an alternative, but those criminals are likely to make all sorts of other mistakes in their security and be catchable anyway.

Add into that particular equation the government snoops and lazy-ass coppers too full of donuts to push themselves away from a desk and try useful work.

For a change.

Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook has made privacy—and the encrypted security protecting users’ privacy from corporate, government or terrorist snooping—into a key issue.

A year ago, Cook stated in an interview that “none of us should accept that the government or a company or anybody should have access to all of our private information,” adding, “This is a basic human right. We all have a right to privacy. We shouldn’t give it up. We shouldn’t give in to scare-mongering or to people who fundamentally don’t understand the details.”

“Terrorists will encrypt. They know what to do,” Cook said. “If we don’t encrypt, the people we affect are the good people.

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