Governments ask tech companies to add backdoors

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Governments of five countries have asked tech companies to build backdoors into encrypted products, so that the law enforcement agencies have an easier time accessing them.

This isn’t your regular ‘can you please do this for us’ type of question – the governments have also included an ‘or else’ into the mix.

In the official communique, signed by Homeland Security, Public Safety, and Immigration Ministers of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States, it says that if companies refuse to do so, they “may pursue technological, enforcement, legislative, or other measures” in order to get into locked devices and services. But they’ll let companies make up their own mind first and give them a chance to voluntarily add backdoors, before drawing any swords.

The governments went on explaining that the backdoors would only be for “lawful” accesses to devices, like in the case of a criminal investigation.  

For tech companies, however, this means they’re caught between a rock and a hard place. In case they do add backdoors to their devices, that would mean that the promise of data privacy is broken. Not only would the devise be more easily accessible to criminals and other people with ill intentions, but they might also end up getting similar requests from other countries and, mind you, not all of them would be conducting a criminal investigation.

The full communique can be found on this link.

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