Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 16th Nov 2010 22:34 UTC
In the News As none other I know how problematic it is to discuss matters related to politics on the web. However, every now and then, there's no way around it, and this is one of those moments. There's this thing going on at airports in the US, and while many will see it as a separate issue, the body scanner issue, and the sad stories it has spawned, are symptoms of a far larger problem that is a direct threat to everything we've fought for during and since the Enlightenment.
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Member since:

Are you sure that there's no limitation on encryption key length (sorry for my choice of terms, that was what I was talking about) in the US ? I thought that was the reason why PGP went into so much trouble...

Edited 2010-11-17 10:05 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

Morgan Member since:

Again, I believe that had to do with export controls and not the encryption itself being illegal. See:

That's not to say the government hasn't tried to outlaw strong encryption, but they are not very successful at doing so. See:

Reply Parent Score: 2

Neolander Member since:

Interesting material, thanks. At the moment, I only have a cellphone at hand, so I can't read the second article, but it sounds like a good read.

I think I found out what my mistake was : there are indeed some legal restrictions on keys larger than 128 bit... but that's in my country ! (You must give a copy to a "trusted third-party" approved by the government, and I'm not sure whether this applies to individuals or only to commercial use)

Edited 2010-11-17 10:52 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:

I thought PGP had been banned for a while but that the related laws where later lifted. At the time encryption was considered a military weapon and PGP encrypted data could only be transferred over a very few friendly borders.

If I do remember correct, the outcome was actually an encryption brain drain from the US. encryption researchers couldn't share information with researchers in other parts of the world. As a result, to do any real research, you had to be outside the US where you could legally co-oporate with other researchers. The US started to fall behind as researcher continued elsewhere.

I'm not sure if either of those memories are correct but I'll through it out there for interest.

Reply Parent Score: 2