Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 21st Nov 2013 23:46 UTC
Internet & Networking

"We can end government censorship in a decade," Schmidt said during a speech in Washington. "The solution to government surveillance is to encrypt everything."

Setting aside the entertaining aspect of the source of said statement, I don't think encryption in and of itself is enough. Encryption performed by companies is useless, since we know by now that companies - US or otherwise - are more than eager to bend over backwards to please their governments.

What we need is encryption that we perform ourselves, so that neither governments nor companies are involved. I imagine some sort of box between your home network and the internet, that encrypts and decrypts everything, regardless of source or destination. This box obviously needs to run open source software, otherwise we'd be right back where we started.

Is something like that even possible?

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Exactly. The whole mess with certificate authorities seems to have no simple or satisfactory solution. Even if "everything" is encrypted, with whom am I talking? To really be sure there is no way around comparing out of band transmitted fingerprints.

What I wish for a start would be that all banks print their SSL certificate fingerprints onto all there brochures and any other paper work. Maybe also on the backside of debit cards (although debit cards often live longer than certificates). But if you ask bank clerks for their SSL fingerprints you just receive blank stares.

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