Indian Government Demands Right To Spy On Skype, Gmail, Blackberry Messages

from the spying-more-important-than-productivity dept

Last year we noted that Indian intelligence officials were quite concerned about Skype, and the fact that they couldn’t easily tap into communications on Skype. Two years ago, we noted a similar story concerning RIM Blackberry emails. Now Slashdot points us to the news that India’s government is once again demanding that Skype and RIM make sure their services are in formats that can be read by law enforcement. A separate article says similar demands are being made on Google with respect to Gmail.

Of course, last time this happened (with RIM, at least), RIM pointed out that there’s simply no way for it to decrypt email sent by users, since it’s based on an encryption key set up by the end user. In response, the Indian government claimed that it had cracked the encryption used by Blackberries and was able to monitor messages sent via those devices. Of course, the fact that it’s now pressuring RIM to format messages in easily spied-upon ways, certainly suggests the news of the cracking of Blackberry’s encryption was somewhat exaggerated.

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Companies: google, rim, skype

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Comments on “Indian Government Demands Right To Spy On Skype, Gmail, Blackberry Messages”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Never Depend on Somebody Else for Your Security

> Never Depend on Somebody Else for Your Security

Ah, but you are depending on somebody else for your security. You are depending on the crypto people who designed and wrote the proofs for the algorithms you are using. Unless you are on the level of a Bruce Schneier, you have to depend on their knowledge and integrity.

india (profile) says:

Well,, all India is asking is “Why are you not allowing us to spy on these services where as countries like USA and UK are allowed to do so…”. India is the one of the top worst terrorist hit countries and if US and UK are allowed the same privileges then why cant India. Moreover they are asking a legal way to monitor but if they want they can do it unofficially since they have already cracked it….

tiger says:

used for wrong reasons

Its a fine line on privacy. If there is another attack and the coomunication used for terror was skype, imagine the Govt. stand. It would look as if they did nothing in preventing. But if a govt. goes too far a uses the tapping for its own benifit, thats wrong too. It all boild down to ethics in this world. Those who have power will use it.

Paul (profile) says:

If you don't protect your privacy, you WILL lose it

The government can make all the laws they want and they can demand anything they want. Demanding doesn’t make it happen. My daughter demands things all the time… but she doesn’t always get them.

Thunderbirg+GPG (up to 1024 bit encryption) or TrulyMail (4096 bit encryption) or Outlook+PGP (up to 1024 bit encryption) these are all solutions to keep your messages private. The government might say they have broken the encryption but I think if a cryptographer found a hole in public key cryptography they would want to publish their work and get a job making big money – rather than working for the Indian government.

Use the tools and keep it private. It’s our right.

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