Thursday, September 19, 2013

Tech Companies and Government May Soon Go to War Over Surveillance

Tech Companies and Government May Soon Go to War Over Surveillance

Currently, there’s no law stopping companies like Apple, Facebook, and Google from introducing such security changes or forcing them to build in backdoors. Why would Apple want its users migrating to cross-platform, anti-snooping messaging apps like Hemlis (by the founders of The Pirate Bay)? Especially when the company could push itself out of the surveillance business with its own technical tweaks before federal regulations force them to become key players in warrant execution.

In fact, advancements in the usability of cryptographic protocols have made anti-surveillance features relatively simple for technology companies to bake into their communications products. And public demand for greater security and privacy in the wake of Edward Snowden’s revelations may make it virtually obligatory for them to do so before new wiretapping laws can be introduced.

This heralds a looming standoff between technology companies and government … even though much of the focus until now has portrayed the two as being in the same camp.