Could We Ban Encryption? - History of attempts and how they were stopped

Think @Logan might find this interesting as it has come up on The Tek on numerous occasions.

Many attempts to ban encryption has appended in both the US and UK though they are often distilled down into bills such as the 'investigatory powers tribunal' (which can put suspected terrorists in jail if they refuse an order to decrypt their hard drive) though the police are back to try and get more powers.

This video goes into some of the history of these attempts such as in the US during the Bill Clinton presidency and in 1998 after Tony Blair was elected.

The fear mongering around terrorism is out of control. Governments around the world are using this excuse to grab power.

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We must be active and loud citizens, not only of our nations, but of the world.

That's the only way to make change for the better, assuming things haven't gotten too bad. There comes a point when armed revolt is the only way to ensure our rights -- such as the right to encrypt our private communications and documents -- but it is a great failure on our part to let that have to happen.


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In a democracy you shouldn't need an armed uprising - you just vote out the people you don't want. Needs enough people not to want them though...

But how can we possibly feel safe?

You're making the assumption that the biggest mob is smart/morally enlightened enough to know any better. When the biggest and loudest mob is a bunch of dumbasses what do you do then? Given how bad public schooling is along with dishonest/corrupt media most people are either ignorant as hell or too disengaged to give a damn. The US was founded by a minority of the colonial population. Eventually that smaller group of people who realize what's going on is either going to have to pick up their stuff and go somewhere else, bend over and take it, or force the issue through armed revolt. Wish it weren't true but that's just how the pickle squirts unfortunately.

Encryption or not, there are few things that needs to be done.

Encryption would not be required if there was public trust, and respect for privacy - not only from governments, and companies, but also from other people.

The people are inherently curious about other people, and with information's about them we can make quite the analysis and different choices. Problem becomes how deep and good the analysis became, and how the information they collect can be interpreted, and what inflammations they collect.

It is common knowledge that smaller companies won't have enough resources to keep and posses advanced analytical abilities. We see that some companies, governments posses enough resources to store, analyze in long term (this is what we really fear), if they couldn't keep records for more than 1 month. People would feel quite safe, but if they have to deal with someone who knows their every move for past 5-10years we're dealing with spies that crunched you so hard that they might know you better than you know yourself.

Going back to encryption, because we cannot trust each others, and we can question their values. Encryption has to exist to protect privacy and safety of people. The algorithms should be made on actual machine.

ex. You turn on your new machine, it asks you to disconnect from network.
- Enter some info on how the encryption should look like (are you looking for safety, performance etc)
- Specify some special variables lets say you want to turn off some features or turn it off completely.
- Decrypt code for hdds and devices. It would give you key that you would need to specify if you wanted open access/decrypt specific drive on different device/machine.

Problems? Criminal investigations, would most likely hit quite the wall on decryption. But if they had warrant i'm sure they would find his backup keys somewhere at his home for recovery.

Wouldn't banning encryption mean that anyone would be able to access bank accounts with little effort?