February 18, 2016 IT SECURITY

The Harvard Report on Encryption

Very interesting survey indeed.

It’s especially important to highlight that when you put in a government mandated backdoor, the only ones affected are those who really have nothing to hide.  I’m inclined to be not overly bothered by the issue because I really don’t care if the FBI checks my texts.  There might be other people from whom I want to hide them, but certainly not the FBI because there’s absolutely nothing illegal in them!

As such, I may choose to live with any backdoor they put in, in the knowledge that it’s unlikely they’ll ever need to snoop in my phone.  But that backdoor, as the survey authors rightly pointed out, will likely cause vulnerabilities that, if found by hackers, will expose my data to them.  And that, I do not want.

Hackers are great researchers; they find vulnerabilities in products before the authors of those products do.  Do you think they won’t find the backdoors?  And when they do, all of Apple’s users’ data will be exposed.  And for what?  For the FBI to be able to decrypt the phone of 1 person, who might be smart enough to use a product from another country anyway, thus rendering all this discussion completely moot.

The Harvard Report on Encryption


US companies, and US people in particular, need to learn the meaning of “the world is flat”.  There’s a very nice book by Thomas L. Friedman of that same title which, I firmly believe, both the FBI and the US government should read.

We live in an open world; and the Internet has made it all the more easy for anyone to access anything from their couch.  I don’t need to fly to Tanzania to purchase their encryption software; I can just download it over the internet.  Geographical barriers are nonexistent, and we all more or less speak English to communicate.  So, if I really have something to hide, I’ll just purchase something that isn’t American.  Personally, I’m starting to think that even with computing products (routers, switches, laptops and the likes) I need to start looking outside the US.

To be honest, I’m quite tired of this tirade.  I’m tired that every time we talk about this topic, the ONLY companies that turn out to be culpable are American companies.

I mean, I’ve yet to hear of a single Chinese company that has truly been found guilty of such doings; despite all the efforts made by our President to muddy the names of certain Chinese competitors of our major corporations.  The Chinese government seems too preoccupied with spying on its own citizens to have time to spy on us.

The Harvard Report on Encryption


Besides, what do they really care about the data in my iPhone?  Each time we look deeper, the only backdoors we discover turn out to be from US companies.

The Harvard Report on Encryption


Are YOU not tired of living in the beacon of the free world, all the while knowing that you’re the only one truly being spied upon?