'Real People' Don't Need Encrypted Messaging Services, Claims U.K. Home Secretary

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The U.K. home secretary Amber Rudd has argued that "real people" do not want secure end-to-end encryption on messaging platforms and are more concerned with usability and features than unbreakable security (via Yahoo News).

Rudd made her case in a newspaper article, published ahead of a meeting today with technology companies in San Francisco, where she will warn tech giants that their services are being misused by terrorists. Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Rudd said:
"Who uses WhatsApp because it is end-to-end encrypted, rather than because it is an incredibly user-friendly and cheap way of staying in touch with friends and family?

"So this is not about asking the companies to break encryption or create so-called 'back doors'.

"Companies are constantly making trade-offs between security and 'usability', and it is here where our experts believe opportunities may lie.

"Real people often prefer ease of use and a multitude of features to perfect, unbreakable security."
Rudd's comments were immediately criticized by privacy campaigners, with civil liberties organization Big Brother Watch calling her viewpoint "at best naïve, at worst dangerous".

"Suggesting that people don't really want security from their online services is frankly insulting," said Renate Samson, chief executive of BBW. "What of those in society who are in dangerous or vulnerable situations, let alone those of us who simply want to protect our communications from breach, hack or cybercrime."

"Once again the government are attempting to undermine the security of all in response to the actions of a few. We are all digital citizens, we all deserve security in the digital space."

Rudd is due to give her speech to tech companies like Twitter, Facebook, and Microsoft, in which she will urge them to do more to remove extremist content online or face new laws forcing them to do so.

Speaking to the BBC, Rudd said she wanted to work more closely with companies on encryption so that "where there is a particular need, where there is a targeted need" the government should be given access to metadata and encrypted content.

But Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, pushed back against that argument, and warned about pushing criminals into even harder to reach parts of the internet.

"If people move off those encrypted services to go to encrypted services in countries that won't share the metadata, the government actually has less information, not more," she said.

Tuesday's summit is the first gathering of the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism, an organization set up by the major tech companies following recent terror attacks. Organization members are likely to resist any action that would result in compromised encryption, however.

In a joint statement, the companies taking part said they were co-operating to "substantially disrupt terrorists' ability to use the internet in furthering their causes, while also respecting human rights".

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Article Link: 'Real People' Don't Need Encrypted Messaging Services, Claims U.K. Home Secretary
 
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peterh988

macrumors 6502a
Jun 5, 2011
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It's quite simple according to the UK government. I use a VPN so i'm either a terrorist/paedophile, or I support terrorists and paedophiles.

Nothing to do with them wanting to monitor everything everyone does, all the time. No sir.
 

k2k koos

macrumors 6502a
Yet another attempt to try and break our privacy. rewind 25 years before txt and email, and it would be the same when the postal service would open every letter written, check the contents, before forwarding it on to it's destination. An absolute disgrace. We live in a world where we value our privacy, it's a right we have, I don't want it to be taken away.
 

arkitect

macrumors 603
Sep 5, 2005
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Bath, United Kingdom
Rudd is my MP, I’m ashamed to say. She really is clueless.
Amber Rudd: what a clueless fool.
I'll third that!
What a clueless fool.

I suppose when we have the most draconian Home Secretary bar none now as our Prime Minister, this should be no surprise.

Like attracts like… they read from the same devious script.

:(
 

simonmet

macrumors 68020
Sep 9, 2012
2,108
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Sydney
what is it with commonweath countries, russia and china being obsessed with spying on their own people
Combination of things I think.

Security is their go-to fall-back when they need to distract from failing in almost all other areas of government policy. It’s marketing to the electorate.

They like to cultivate a sense of fear.

They’re scared about growing anti-government sentiment and want to monitor it. Russia and China are more extreme as they’re known to kill and arrest dissidents.

UK, USA, China and Russia all have this superpower mentality. Australian Government also thinks it’s more important than it is on the back of UK and USA relationships.
 

RamGuy

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2011
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Norway
Just like most "real people" should start leaving all their credit card information on porn sites in an attempt to spare children from watching porn on the web? These guys keeps cracking out one brilliant idea after another.

I watched porn from I was about 9 years old. And guess what. I didn't go insane.
 
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fitshaced

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Jul 2, 2011
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The only way she could make such a statement with a level of accuracy is by ASKING instead of telling. And not just a quick door to door, a referendum. And no corrupt campaigning like what happened with Brexit. Educational material written by experts who can explain the pros and cons.

But obviously won’t happen as it will massively interfere with her career ambition.
 
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Sunny1990

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Feb 13, 2015
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Rudd is due to give her speech to tech companies like Twitter, Facebook, and Microsoft, in which she will urge them to do more to remove extremist content online or face new laws forcing them to do so.

But Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, pushed back against that argument, and warned about pushing criminals into even harder to reach parts of the internet.
But i want to keep my data encrypted from Facebook. I don't trust them
 

fitshaced

macrumors 68000
Jul 2, 2011
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Just like most "real people" should start leaving all their credit card information on porn sites in an attempt to spare children from watching porn on the web? These guys keeps cracking out one brilliant idea after another.

I watched porn from I was about 9 years old. And guess what. I didn't go insane.
Pull your trousers up mate, this is not the place.
 

mox358

macrumors 6502
May 22, 2002
471
153
Indiana
Politicians are "real people" right? Once we take away encryption from them and their dirty deals are revealed they'll pass laws in a week demanding its restoration.

It's unbelievable how your job can be to create laws without understanding what they mean or their repercussions.
 

soupcan

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2014
732
2,926
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I am at a loss for words here. How can someone be in this position and be so technologically inept as a brick? And that's an insult to the brick.

Honestly, she should go to places like DefCon for once to see how important digital security and encryption really is. Not that she'd understand, but at least she'd see it.

Oh well. I guess I'm an alien now. Aliens deserve encryption, right?
 
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Breaking Good

macrumors 65816
Sep 28, 2012
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Theresa Mayhem and Amber Rudderless are on a quest to take away any semblance of privacy that UK citizens currently have.
You don't think the opposition (New Labor????) would try the same power grab would try the same thing if they were in power.

I can assure you that in the United States all politicians are trying to grab as much power as possible while stripping the citizens of their rights.

Depriving citizens of their rights as free people is the only thing both parties in the United States can agree on.
 
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Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
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You don't think the opposition (New Labor????) would try the same power grab would try the same thing if they were in power.

I can assure you that in the United States all politicians are trying to grab as much power as possible while stripping the citizens of their rights.

Depriving citizens of their rights as free people is the only thing both parties in the United States can agree on.
I don't think Corbyn is up for big state like that. He is far left after all.
 

arkitect

macrumors 603
Sep 5, 2005
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You don't think the opposition (New Labor????) would try the same power grab would try the same thing if they were in power.

I can assure you that in the United States all politicians are trying to grab as much power as possible while stripping the citizens of their rights.
For now, this is not a Labour government. It is a Tory government held in place by an alliance with some of the most despicable of Right Wing Irish politicians.

So, yes, I agree, politicians are always on the look for themselves and boning up on ways and means how to keep the proles in the dark, clueless and immobile.

But: This is a Conservative government, and so any "yes, but, no but, look! Labour! Ooh! Scary!" is not relevant.
 
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