Techdirt Reading List: Crypto: How The Code Rebels Beat The Government Saving Privacy In The Digital Age

from the crypto-wars-history dept

We're back again with another in our weekly reading list posts of books we think our community will find interesting and thought provoking. Once again, buying the book via the Amazon links in this story also helps support Techdirt.


As you may have noticed, we're now deep into the "Crypto Wars 2.0" these days -- especially with the news of the week concerning the FBI's demand that Apple create a special backdoor for iPhones. Thus, I thought it might be worth exploring some books on the original Crypto Wars of the 1990s, so that people can understand a bit of the history here. The one that everyone talks about is Steven Levy's Crypto: How the Code Rebels Beat the Government--Saving Privacy in the Digital Age -- though a recent review by Kendra Albert notes, unfortunately accurately, that Levy is horrible when writing about women (and, as an aside, anyone who refers to EFF boss Cindy Cohn as "diminutive" doesn't know a damn thing about Cindy Cohn who is a total badass).

In looking for some other books on the Crypto Wars, there unfortunately isn't very much. The only other thing I turned up was a book called Persuasion and Privacy in Cyberspace: The Online Protests over Lotus MarketPlace and the Clipper Chip which looks at those two different online protest efforts, written by professor Laura Gurak.

Seeing as this round of crypto wars seems to be heating up to dangerous levels, I'd certainly recommend either learning about -- or at least refreshing yourself -- on what went down the last time around.
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Filed Under: crypto wars, encryption, laura gurak, steven levy


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