Andorin writes: Put off by the general public's easy access to strong communications encryption systems, a group of federal law enforcement and national security officials have pulled together a plan that aims to ease the government's burdens when carrying out digital wiretaps. Under the proposed measures, which are to be submitted next year, communications services that encrypt connections between users, such as Skype, would be required to provide a way for law enforcement agents to decrypt messages- essentially a backdoor in the services. Additionally, any software that encrypts connections and is not overseen by a central authority, such as OTR for instant messaging and PGP/GPG for email, must be redesigned to include a backdoor for federal officials. The EFF's article about the proposal reminds readers of the "crypto-wars" of the 1990s, when the government attempted to undermine encryption software, but failed in the courts in 1999.
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