Articles about encryption

SmartThings hub and devices

Insteon and Wink home hubs appear to have a problem with encryption

Security researchers have discovered that two popular home automation systems are vulnerable to attacks. The Insteon Hub and Wink Hub 2 are designed to connect various home products and manage automation, and the flaws represent another entry in the growing catalogue of IoT security shortcomings. Rapid7 discovered two …
John Leyden, 25 Sep 2017

NBD: Adobe just dumped its PRIVATE PGP key on the internet

An absent-minded security staffer just accidentally leaked Adobe's private PGP key onto the internet. The disclosure was spotted by security researcher Juho Nurminen – who found the key on the Photoshop giant's Product Security Incident Response Team blog, ironically. That contact page should have only included the public PGP …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Sep 2017
Crypto fingers

Microsoft pitches encrypted Azure to keep cloud data secret

Microsoft has a unveiled a set of services it hopes will alleviate security concerns with its public cloud service. Known as Azure Confidential Computing, the service is currently in an early access test and aims to provide security for cloud data while it is in use by cloud applications. The idea, says Microsoft, is to keep …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Sep 2017

'Independent' gov law reviewer wants users preemptively identified before they're 'allowed' to use encryption

The UK’s “independent reviewer of terrorism legislation” appears to have gone rogue, saying that encryption should be withheld from people who don’t verify their identities on social media. Max Hill QC is supposedly the reviewer of government laws designed to stop terrorists. His latest statement, carried in tonight’s London …

Deputy AG Rosenstein calls for law to require encryption backdoors

The deputy US Attorney General said he wants legislators to force technology companies to decrypt people's private conversations. Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday told a crowd of over 600 police officers that software developers should be required by law to unscrambled end-to-end encrypted chatter on demand – and if the engineers …
Shaun Nichols, 31 Aug 2017

Macie slay: AWS touts S3 patrol bots to kill data-slurping hackers

AWS kicked off its New York City summit with a handful of announcements on Monday. Among the new stuff available from Amazon's cloud is a tool that tries to stop leaks of sensitive information – such as people's personal records – along with a file migration and indexing utility, and a configuration and key management system. …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Aug 2017
Silhouette of spy discerning password from code uses a command on graphic user interface

Good Lord: Former UK spy boss backs crypto

A former boss at UK domestic spy arm MI5 has cautioned against a crackdown on encrypted messaging apps. Lord Evans, who retired in 2013, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme (link here) that he did not support encryption restrictions despite acknowledging cryptography had been an obstacle in investigating terrorist cases, saying …
John Leyden, 11 Aug 2017
Spy hides in dustbin, lifts lid to take photograph

'Real' people want govts to spy on them, argues UK Home Secretary

Analysis UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd kicked off a firestorm in the tech community Tuesday when she argued that "real people" don't need or use end-to-end encryption. In an article in the Daily Telegraph timed to coincide with Rudd's appearance at a closed event in San Francisco, Rudd argued: "Real people often prefer ease of use and a …

Look out Silicon Valley, here comes Brit bruiser Amber Rudd to lay down the (cyber) law

Executives at Facebook, Google and other terrorist-enabling online services are said to be quaking in their boots as UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd swoops into Silicon Valley this week to read them the riot act. Rudd has been a frequent critic of social media giants, particularly after the murders in London and Manchester, and …
Kieren McCarthy, 31 Jul 2017

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg: Crypto ban won't help trap terrorists

Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg has reiterated the social network's position that weakening the encryption of messaging apps isn't going to give governments what they want. Governments and law enforcement agencies are increasingly going public with their frustration that encryption prevents them accessing …

Reminder: Spies, cops don't need to crack WhatsApp. They'll just hack your smartphone

Police in Germany will forego seeking decryption keys for secure messaging apps, like WhatsApp, and instead simply hack devices to snoop on suspects. Given the grumblings coming from Australia, the UK, and other Five Eyes states about encrypted messaging, we suspect these nations will follow suit – if they're not there already …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Jul 2017

Legal boffins poke holes in EU lawmaker's ePrivacy proposals

The European Commission's proposed ePrivacy law needs significant amendments, particularly on location tracking and keeping people's communications confidential, according to an in-depth study. The report (PDF), written by five experts from the Institute for Information Law at the University of Amsterdam, says that in some …
Rebecca Hill, 21 Jul 2017
Crypto fingers

Quantum crypto upstart QuintessenceLabs hopes to cut the cord

With AU$3.26m from Australia's government, quantum crypto outfit QuintessenceLabs has set to work getting the fibre out of its diet, and instead running quantum key exchange over free space. While there have been scientific demonstrations of quantum exchanges both terrestrially and between earth and satellites, …

China's 'future-proof' crypto: We talk to firm behind crazy quantum key distribution network

Two hundred local government employees across the capital of China's eastern Shandong province will soon be encrypting messages with keys that are "impossible" to crack. QuantumCTek, headquartered in the humid, subtropical city of Hefei in eastern China, will next month launch a commercial network for creating and sharing …
Andrew Silver, 19 Jul 2017
Backdoor key

UK spookhaus GCHQ can crack end-to-end encryption, claims Australian A-G

British signals intelligence agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) can crack end-to-end encrypted messages sent using WhatsApp and Signal, according to Australian attorney-general George Brandis. Brandis made the claim speaking to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's AM program, on the occasion of Australia …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Jul 2017
Businessman with unlocked padlock - shutterstck

G20 calls for 'lawful and non-arbitrary access to available information' to fight terror

Comment The meeting of G20 leaders decided to do something about the internet. The final G20 Leaders' Statement on Countering Terrorism included the following plan: We will work with the private sector, in particular communication service providers and administrators of relevant applications, to fight exploitation of the internet …

Former GCHQ boss backs end-to-end encryption

Former GCHQ director Robert Hannigan has spoken out against building backdoors into end-to-end encryption (e2) schemes as a means to intercept communications by terrorists and other ne'er do wells. UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd has criticised mobile messaging services such as WhatsApp, that offer end-to-end encryption in the …
John Leyden, 10 Jul 2017

Oz government wants its own definition of what 'backdoor' means

Australia’s federal government has shifted its ground on the encryption debate, and is now working to hem in the debate by constraining the definition of “backdoor”. The technologist’s understanding is that anything that compromises encryption represents a “backdoor” of some kind, from NSA-style bug-hoarding to key escrow to …

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