Monday, October 20, 2014

The Arrogance of Ignorance

It looks like law enforcement is pushing back against strong encryption they cannot get into.

FBI quest for smartphone data will fuel privacy battle

FBI Director James Comey said as much Thursday in a speech at the Brookings Institution in Washington, suggesting the agency might ask congress to force companies to provide what amounts to a “back door” to law enforcement to obtain password-protected data on targeted personal mobile devices.

Sigh...

I've argued before that there is no such thing as a backdoor that can only be used by law enforcement. A security hole is a security hole whether it called a "backdoor" or a "golden key". In fact, a deliberately planted backdoor -- as opposed to one resulting from design or programming error -- is worse because the bad guys know for sure it is there. To think that the Chinese or the Jihadis will not look for it and pick the lock is a sure sign of ignorance.

ETA: Another thought that occurred to me is that once the bad guys figure out how to exploit the government mandated "golden key" backdoor, the vendors will not be able to patch it without permission from the government!.

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