UK law enforcement seeks end to impenetrable encryption
Law enforcement and tech companies are at odds on the subject of encryption. It’s encryption so thorough that even the tech companies can’t decrypt it. Encrypted phones from suspects and victims have stopped homicide investigations. But for those who refuse to incriminate themselves, the issue comes down to basic property and knowledge rights.
It seems that the United Kingdom has taken to statute to force Silicon Valley-types into its hand on the topic of encrypted communications.
The Investigatory Powers Bill gives law enforcement — from spy agency MI5 to the local police department — the power to request unencrypted communications from tech-sector and service businesses if warranted.
There’s a specific target on end-to-end encrypted conversations which is said to be a channel of choice for lawless types, especially in the face of ISIS recruitments from the nation.
The practice of encryption itself would not be banned — obviously, encryption isn’t just used for obscuring criminal acts. One major concession is that local content encryption doesn’t look to be affected by the law.
Also in the bill is a requirement that binds telcos to holding customers’ web browsing history at least a year, in the case that law enforcement needs to inspect certain sites.
There was a failed attempt a web history retention bill in 2013.