Encrypted code

Officials reminded everyone this week that governments in the US and UK have not given up on their efforts to force tech companies to provide encryption backdoors, despite previous attempts being shut down following public outcry.

The week started strong with the first of these comments being made by UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd who loudly claimed that tech companies are "patronizing" and "sneering" at state officials who try to implement encryption backdoors.

Rudd: I don't need to understand how encryption works

"I don't need to understand how encryption works to understand how it's helping the criminals," Rudd said at a party conference, as quoted by the BBC.

Rudd suggested that companies have a "moral" obligation to help officials, suggesting that her government is more than determined to pass laws in support of encryption backdoors, despite the tech sector's pushback.

"I am not suggesting you give us the code," she said, "What I am saying is the companies who are developing that should work with us."

Rosenstein: Encryption is warrant-proof

Similar comments were made by US Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, yesterday, while speaking at a tech summit in Boston.

Rosenstein called for public support for encryption backdoors, bringing into discussion the problem of Dark Web markets where criminals often operate undisturbed and under the protection of encrypted communications.

"Dark markets are one of the worst examples of a broader problem that we know is going dark," Rosenstein said, quoted by The Security Ledger.

Rosenstein also brought into discussion instant messaging companies, who he'd like to act more like classic phone companies and bend over and obey every time a police officer flashes a warrant.

To that sense, Rosenstein has called encryption a "warrant-proof" technology that gives criminals a free pass.

"We in law enforcement have no desire to undermine encryption," said Rosenstein, albeit that's what he's was precisely what he was pushing for. "People should understand the consequences of warrant-proof security," he added, saying authorities must "reset a constitutional balance."

EU officials preparing law to ban encryption backdoors

Similar efforts to push for encryption backdoors are also underway in Germany and France. In all cases, officials are brazenly asking for encryption backdoors because of terrorist attacks and criminal activity, but none of them seem to acknowledge the inestimable damage that a freely exploitable and exposed encryption backdoor could cause to legitimate businesses.

While amnesia and ignorance seem to be flourishing among state officials in the four countries above, EU officials appear to be more sensible about the problem, preparing to issue legislation that bans any type of encryption backdoor across Europe, in an attempt to counter local legislation.

The US' constant push for encryption backdoors, ignoring common sense and all the reasons to keep encryption intact, is also why US allies have recently rejected an encryption algorithm put forward by the NSA, fearing it might contain backdoors or weaken the security of products where it might be used.