A congressional bill may decide how the US will approach encrypted smartphones
Lawmakers in the United Kingdom have been mulling over a bill that would open up backdoors to encryption provided by tech companies from Apple to Facebook to Google. Stateside, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies have been drumming up the case for accessible decryption tools. The governments of New York and California also have bills tilting against impenetrable encryption.
Now, Democratic Representative Ted Lieu of California has introduced the Ensuring National Constitutional Rights for Your Private Telecommunications Act of 2016 (ENCRYPT) that would nullify any state legislation that would alter encryption practices of electronic goods and service producers, developers, retailers and end users.
Lieu cites the Interstate Commerce clause in the Article One of the Constitution that prevents individual states from regulating products used in all 50 states. He also says the bill has sponsors from four congressmen, two each from the Democratic and Republican sides.
Mind you, the bill only discounts state encryption bills. Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, also of California, is drafting a bill mandating decryption by court order.