US Attorney general, William Barr, recently addressed the ever-controversial topic of encryption art the International Conference on Cyber Security at Fordham University. While encryption has grown in use since the creation of the internet and other electronic devices, governments worldwide are attempting to ensure these mediums can still be accessed by government officials.
The Government’s View on Encryption
At the conference, Barr said encryption can be used for violent criminals to hide their suspicious activity from law enforcement. He went on to make the point that security shouldn’t sacrifice the government’s ability to protect people and things in the real world. Criminal activity surveillance is, in his words, “going dark” and law enforcement is no longer able to gain lawful access to data and communications needed for criminal activity.
This feeling of anti-encryption is similar to a law recently put in place by the Australian government. Their newest bill allows companies to bypass encryption if asked by the Australian government and technology businesses must create special access to backend data within telecommunications companies, social media platforms, and email providers. Those who refuse to decrypt information for authorities can be fined and may face prison time.
While many government officials seem to be pushing for backdoors, former Director of the National Security Agency, Gen. Michael Hayden, disagreed with a tweet regarding Barr’s security speech.
In Support of Security
While the well-known Edward Snowden incident seemed to kickstart consumer concern for privacy, the internet has been increasing security since it began. Data from Google found that as of April of this year, 91% of web pages that US users visit were secured. Encryption, in general, is a booming market with 45% of organizations having a consistent enterprise-wide encryption strategy according to a Global Encryption Trends Study.
German prosecutor, Markus Hartmann disagreed with US officials saying that cybercriminals will simply turn to other services for encryption that can be downloaded in minutes. Allowing lawful access is not the sole solution to the problem at hand. Privacy advocates have said that allowing backdoors to be added to encryption completely defeats the purpose. There was no mention in the speech of the tools that governments have used in the past to break into encrypted devices in the name of national security.
Risking American Privacy
The federal government says that they are “going dark” because of their lack of access to encrypted communication. Security experts and manufacturers say there is no safe way to create a backdoor without compromising the security of the consumer. Just because the backdoor is meant for one party, doesn’t mean unethical hackers and other criminals won’t find the same door.
Barr responded to this saying that the severity of the risk should be compared to the risks in society if a device does not have backdoors for law enforcement. The issue lies within the details of the backdoor usage if it were to be implemented. Under what circumstances would government officials access an average consumer’s device? To how many devices and services would the backdoor be applicable? These among other questions raise concerns, as Sen. Ron Wyden said if the US officials were given this unprecedented power, they would abuse it.
Total Privacy With No Backdoors
There is no doubt that Americans and consumers worldwide appreciate their privacy in communications and beyond. The SecureDrive is a hardware encrypted storage solution with absolutely no backdoors. Users can unlock the drive through an onboard keypad, or wirelessly through a mobile app. The drives come equipped with brute force anti-hacking mechanisms to wipe the device clean after 10 consecutive failed login attempts. It is designed with a tough epoxy coating so the parts cannot be separated or reverse engineered.
Encrypted data is ideal for more than just the average consumer, it is commonly used in healthcare, financial services, education and research, and technology. If you want to learn more about the ideal hardware-encrypted storage solution to keep data in your hands, call us at 1-800-875-3230.