Thursday, May 18, 2006

Does Government Actually Know Anything?

Sometimes you have to wonder about the mental capacities of government officials.

Businesses and individuals in Britain may soon have to give their encryption keys to the police or face imprisonment. The UK government has said it will bring in the new powers to address a rise in the use of encryption by criminals and terrorists.

So the British government is concerned that criminals and terrorists are using encryption for illicit purposes. Their solution? Make non-citizens hand over their encryption keys. Not only does this sound uniquely unenforcable, it won't do any good. People that are actually using encryption for illegal activities won't cooperate. It's much better to go to jail for failure to provide encryption keys than to go to jail for conspiracy to blow up Buckingham Palace.

Meanwhile the government and government employees all get to snoop around on private communications and files. I don't know about you, but that just doesn't sound very bright to me.

HatTip: SlashDot

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