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Comment One time pad is a time machine, not a crpto algori (Score 1) 138

People are thinking about one time pads in the wrong way. OTPs should be thought of not as a crypto algorithm, but rather as a time machine!

Suppose that that Bob and Alice have a secure channel now, that they will not have in the future. They will have an insecure channel in the future. A OTP allows them to exchange messages now, that have not been written yet! A OTP is a message time machine. It allows you to securely exchange a message now, that you intend to write in the future.

After they exchange a OTP, if either Bob or Allice gets hacked, so that the OTP is surreptitiously exposed, then that is equivalent to exposing a message that has not been written yet.

The proper way to think about OTP is not as a crypto algorithm, but rather as a message time machine.

Comment We need an international secret sharing service. (Score 3, Interesting) 184

I do not like Voyeurs but this could set a precedent that would be used against everyone

Some one can make a lot of money by setting up an secret sharing service so that you do not actually know your password.

The company would be owned and operated offshore in many countries some of which will not honor US warrants.

When you start the service a strong password would be setup using the technique of cryptographic secret sharing, so that the password is split on servers in many countries many of which do not honor US warrants.

You also have a authentication password totally controlled by you that proves that you are you.

When you want to use your password, you send a authenticated message to the servers, and your password is reassembled from the parts using encrypted communications by a computer program, so that you never see the password. You could have redundancy so that sabotage at one server would not cause it to break. You could set it up so that it takes M out of N servers to cooperate to get your password, where M is less than N. You could also mix in yourself in the sharing algorithm so that you have one small piece of the password so that the servers can not reconstruct the real password without your help. But your piece would not be enough to reconstruct the real password. Thus, the servers could not pretend to do something without your consent.

When you are detained, your lawyer causes a delay. (Any Lawyer who can not cause a delay is incompetent.) During the delay, a canary tells the servers that you are being coerced, and the servers stop cooperating until you can prove that you are free again.

Use defensive formulation! You bought the service because you were afraid of being coerced by criminals and foreign governments, not because you wanted to evade US laws!

In any case you never had the password.

Comment This is Obama's way of telling Hilary she is...... (Score 4, Interesting) 534

This is Obama's way of telling Hillary she is under the bus.

Obama does not care about Snowen. By this time, Obama has probably bought the *IA's line that Snowden is the anti-christ, that should be shot on sight. Under normal circumstances, he would just say that he will not pardon Snowden because Snowden is bad.

Also, Obama has competent legal help, as well as being a lawyer himself. He knows he can pardon Snowden if he wants to. But the situation visa-vie Snowden allows Obama to state a principle that disallows a pardon for Hilary, without referring to Hilary or even admitting that he knows it might apply to Hilary.

This is a very elegant way to throw Hilary under the bus, without even mentioning she might exist. He can say to Hilary supporters when the question inevitably comes up "I must apply my principles without fear of favor."

Whatever you think about Obama you have to admit that he is a very smart fellow.

Comment It goes against the text (Score 3, Insightful) 215

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects,[a] against unreasonable searches and seizures

Nowhere does it say I have to rely on a governmental promise not to do an unreasonable search, it says I have a right to secure myself against such a search.

The proposal goes against the plain meaning of the fourth.

Submission + - FBI Drops Case Against Apple; May Have Way to Break Phone (

msm1267 writes: The FBI has dropped its case against Apple less than a day before a scheduled court hearing and showdown over its demands that Apple help unlock a terrorist’s iPhone.

The government late Monday afternoon filed a motion to vacate its case, putting a halt to a saga that began in mid-February when a federal magistrate ordered Apple to help the FBI access a phone belonging to one of the shooters involved in last December’s attack that killed 14 in San Bernardino, Calif.

The motion also indicates that the FBI may have found a way onto the phone without Apple’s help. “On Sunday, March 20, 2016, an outside party demonstrated to the FBI a possible method for unlocking [shooter Syed] Farook’s iPhone,” the motion says. “Testing is required to determine whether it is a viable method that will not compromise data on Farook’s iPhone. If the method is viable, it should eliminate the need for the assistance from Apple Inc. (“Apple”) set forth in the All Writs Act Order in this case.”

Comment Re:sub-contrat signing offshore? (Score 1) 596

Right, because people of good character can never be coerced into becoming bad actors. Right. I guess, if you find someone with no remaining living relatives or friends and no addictions or unmet needs, you'll have found the one person in the world nobody can leverage in any way. Good luck with that.

Never is not available as an option. Like has there never been a failure of the legal system. Good character does not have to be perfect, it only has to be more reliable than the legal system. To increase reliability increase the number of signers of known good character required.

Comment Re:sub-contrat signing offshore? (Score 1) 596

So you just choose people of good character to do your signing for you. As government moves to outlaw good character by forcing everyone to be a stooge for the government, it means the rule of law will no longer be an effective way to enforce contracts. In such an environment, ancient concepts like character and reputation become even more important.

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