I remember the days of the Clipper Chip, and of the prohibition on exporting strong crypto. I remember getting a package from Checkpoint in Ramat Gan, Israel (over international DHL, I believe it was) that was slathered with warning stickers that said it could not leave the USA...when it originated from Israel.
I remember in 2000, doing an IV&V of a VPN solution that did something really funky with their key generation, such that they were allowed to export strong (based on bit size) encryption without having to do key escrow. They put some of the key generation material in the handshake exchange...which means it went in the clear. I shit you not. Oh, and also, their algorithm had no forward secrecy...which was the whole point. Anyone who had sniffed the session could go to the operator of the VPN with a warrant, and have them re-generate the key that was negotiated between the two endpoints...making it possible to decrypt the session. Of course, this came along with a whole metric shitload of security problems, like the fact that compromising the VPN concentrator and pulling a little data off of it would give you the ability to decrypt any session that included that concentrator (we never got to the point of seeing if we could get the same effect by attacking the client). Basically, the whole thing was just a big pile of bitch cock, just waiting for disaster. (We also found a one-packed DoS, a buffer overflow, and other things...all unauthenticated attacks.)
And the best part? The client for whom it turned out I was doing this IV&V. It was the United States Secret Service...specifically the protective detail for the incoming Bush administration. This pig-fucker of a VPN solution was going to be used to protect the President of the United States. That was fun to find out...at the outset of the engagement, we thought our client was the Treasury Department in general (which was kind of true, in a way). When we had "The Meeting" to tell them what a disaster the solution was, they told us who we were really working for in specific. I really needed a drink after that meeting.
Needless to say, the Secret Service ended up going with a different solution.
And now here we are again...with different people but the same organizations bringing up the same dogshit reasons to try and justify demanding the same dumb-shit idea be implemented...backdoored encryption. I find it so incredibly interesting that, when it came down to it, the US Government wouldn't rely on a solution like that to protect themselves, but they would insist that the rest of us accept it for our own use. It makes me want to spew a litany of every obscene word and phrase I can remember, in alphabetical order.