Senators Burr And Feinstein, Once Again, Threatening New Bill To Backdoor Encryption

from the yeah-that's-not-going-to-go-over-well dept

They’ve been promising it for months now, without ever actually doing anything, but Senators Dianne Feinstein and Richard Burr (the two top members of the Senate Intelligence Committee) now insist that they’re finally ready to release their anti-encryption bill.

Feinstein told The Hill she passed the text along earlier this week to White House chief of staff Denis McDonough.

?My hope is since I was the one that gave it to Denis McDonough, they will take a look at it and let us know what they think,? she said.

The Obama administration?s response will determine the bill?s timing, Burr added.

The introduction ?depends on how fast the White House gets back to us,? he said.

Since, to date, the administration has actually indicated that it does not support such a bill, one hopes that means the introduction will continue to be “sometime around never.” Even if it is introduced, it sounds like the bill may actually have a tough time getting anywhere. As we’ve noted, recent hearings suggest that many in Congress are quite skeptical of the FBI/DOJ’s claim that it needs backdoors into encryption. Indeed, even many in the intelligence community (which you’d think would have indicated this to Burr and Feinstein) don’t seem particularly enthusiastic about this. Reliable Feinstein/Burr allies like former NSA and CIA director Michael Hayden, former Homeland Security director Michael Chertoff and former NSA director Mike McConnell have spoken out strongly against such plans.

Given all that, it’s bizarre and ridiculous that Feinstein and Burr are continuing to move forward with this plan. Hopefully, the White House educates them on the issue and tells them to toss this bill into the garbage where it belongs.

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Comments on “Senators Burr And Feinstein, Once Again, Threatening New Bill To Backdoor Encryption”

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Groaker (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

I will agree that most things are merely highly improbable, but there are things that are impossible.

Perpetual motion
A good half of all starting positions in the Fifteen puzzle are unsolvable.
Constructing a triangle from its angle bisectors is in general impossible
Creating a machine that would tell for every statement whether it’s true or false.
Deriving Euclid’s fifth postulate from the other four.
Doubling a cube
Finding the center of a given circle with the straightedge alone
An Impossible Frame
An Impossible Fork
An Impossible Page
Impossible to optimize the ratio Area/Price by a combination of two pizzas of different sizes.
Moving pegs five places in one direction
Representing √2 as a rational fraction p/q.
Solving the general quintic equation in radicals.
Squaring a circle
Structural Constellation
Trisecting an angle (in general)
Emptying Prisons with Simple Shapes
It is impossible to find four consecutive integers whose product is a square.

And ever so many more

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Yes, lets know pretend that we know more than we actually do.

The Universe itself appears to be machine of Perpetual Motion despite the law of conservation of energy. Unless you know something about the Universe the rest of us do not. We have no knowledge of an external energy source to the Universe so by the definition of the Law of Conservation it might be actually perpetual. And do not bring up entropy, just because we may not survive our current understanding of where Entropy is leading does not mean that the universe will not.

We do not know from whence it came or to where it goes, pretending that we do know based on the rather limited view & understanding we currently have is a work of Hubris and Ego unfitting for any scientist.

Tim R says:

Lather, Rinse, Repeat

Isn’t this why people are so disenfranchised with the federal government? The arrogant hardline stance that they know how to handle our stuff better than we do? Doesn’t really matter if it’s our own bodies (abortion, drugs, healthcare), our own property (eminent domain, asset forfeiture, triennial DMCA exemptions), or in some cases, our own opinions (lobbyists and cronyism contravening the will of the people). And with an alleged consolidation of power in various critical segments of the public sector, it’s a wonder they haven’t gotten further than they have.

kenichi tanaka (profile) says:

What the hell is going on with congress? Even if, by some miracle, they manage to pass such a bill and even if Obama happens to to sign it into law, there’s no way the U.S. Supreme Court would allow the law to stand as it would be deemed unconstitutional.

The way I see it, it’s beyond the government’s authority to force any person, entity, company or business to engage in behavior or conduct that would be contrary to their interests. Indentured servitude doesn’t exist in this country and this is exactly what congress and the government is trying to do.

Not only are they trying to force Apple into indentured servitude by forcing them to build something that they currently do not have but then they are also trying to pass laws forcing business entities to build backdoors into all of their products.

This isn’t what congress was designed for. Good grief! It feels like were back in the 1950’s again, where neighbors were spying on neighbors and reporting them to the police. This smacks of communism and that isn’t what this country stands for.

Uriel-238 (profile) says:

Plausible Deniability

When you enter the wrong password, rather than telling you you did bad, it pops to a fake account that contains just enough user data to seem real.

If the fixed memory is checked, most of the phone’s data looks like garbage in unused sectors.

That way, no-one can claim that you didn’t unlock the phone, or that the phone might contain additional data.

Coming to the next iOS or Android release.

Monday (profile) says:

Senators Dianne Feinstein and Richard Burr are, again, showing just ignorant they are on encryption – dangerous.

I would like for once to see a Leader (POTUS perhaps) just come forward and speak from the podium to ‘the people‘, once for all, telling just how dangerous and impossible and weakening and abusive creating “backdoors” to anything is. Speaking on just what the near and far reaching ramifications are, and close this debate for, as long as possible; good we could only hope.

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