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Gov't wants tech companies' backdoors for snooping

Gov't wants tech companies' backdoors for snooping
photo courtesy of shutterstock

British Prime Minister David Cameron created more than just a few waves recently by announcing that secured messaging apps, like Snapchat and WhatsApp, would be banned unless they created backdoors for government spying. And he wasn't alone in that sentiment.

President Obama all but agreed with Cameron on the issue of backdoors in social media. In a press conference with the prime minister, he stressed the need for secret ways for governments to spy on potential terrorists.

More specifically, he stated:

"Social media and the Internet is the primary way in which these terrorist organizations are communicating. That’s not different from anybody else, but they’re good at it. And when we have the ability to track that in a way that is legal, conforms with due process, rule of law and presents oversight, then that’s a capability that we have to preserve. "

Obama is saying is that terrorists like ISIS are adept at using social media to their advantage. Authorities may be able to get a phone number or email address, but without a way to find these people there's no way to effectively combat terrorism that's spreading through social media.

Unsurprisingly, not everyone is happy about the proposed changes. Privacy advocates voice legitimate concerns about the proposed measures.

Brian Duggen told Slate back in 2013: "Creating a back door in software is like creating a lock to which multiple people hold the keys. The more people who have a key, the higher the likelihood that one will get lost."

If the proposed backdoors were built into every form of software, then it's only a matter of time before something like the iCloud celebrity nude leaks happen again. Or, something even worse.

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Source: Slate
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