Tag: government (page 1 of 2)

E2EE is for everyone

Not only has the current UK government underfunded the NHS since coming to power in an attempt to introduce market-based medicine, orchestrated the unprecedented national self-sabotage that is Brexit, and attacked the BBC, but they’re also trying to convince the British public that end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is only wanted by paedophiles.

The hypocrisy of it knows no bounds. These are the same politicians who rely on the E2EE of WhatsApp, Signal, and other messaging services to plot against one another and society in general.

Critics sometimes claim that encryption makes it impossible to subpoena or obtain a warrant for information from people’s phones — this is bizarre because governments already demand such data. What they are actually complaining about is that the “platform” — for instance Facebook — no longer wants to be able to see the content themselves. The warrant will have to be served upon the device owner, not upon the (social) network provider.

Good security demands that data that we share amongst family and friends should remain available only to those family and friends; and likewise that data which we share with businesses should remain only with those businesses, and should only be used for agreed business purposes.

Network providers — and, importantly, messaging-network and social-network providers — are helping their users obtain better data security by cutting themselves off from the ability to access plaintext content. Simply: they don’t need to see it, and it’s not their job to police or censor it. Their adoption of end-to-end encryption makes everyone’s data safer.

The world needs end-to-end encryption. It needs more of it. We need the privacy, agency, and control over data that end-to-end encryption enables. And encryption is needed everywhere and by everyone — not just by politicians and police forces.

Source: Why we need #EndToEndEncryption and why it’s essential for our safety, our children’s safety, and for everyone’s future #noplacetohide | dropsafe

UK government adviser warns against plans to force the NHS to share data with police forces

It’s entirely unsurprising that governments should seek to use the pandemic as cover for hoovering up data about its citizens. However, it’s up to us to resist this.

Plans to force the NHS to share confidential data with police forces across England are “very problematic” and could see patients giving false information to doctors, the government’s data watchdog has warned.

[…]

Dr Nicola Byrne also warned that emergency powers brought in to allow the sharing of data to help tackle the spread of Covid-19 could not run on indefinitely after they were extended to March 2022.

Dr Byrne, 46, who has had a 20-year career in mental health, also warned against the lack of regulation over the way companies were collecting, storing and sharing patient data via health apps.

She told The Independent she had raised concerns with the government over clauses in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which is going through the House of Lords later this month.

The legislation could impose a duty on NHS bodies to disclose private patient data to police to prevent serious violence and crucially sets aside a duty of confidentiality on clinicians collecting information when providing care.

Dr Byrne said doing so could “erode trust and confidence, and deter people from sharing information and even from presenting for clinical care”.

She added that it was not clear what exact information would be covered by the bill: “The case isn’t made as to why that is necessary. These things need to be debated openly and in public.”

Source: Plans to hand over NHS data to police sparks warning from government adviser | The Independent

On the dangers of CBDCs

I can’t remember the last time I used cash. Or rather, I can (for my son’s haircut) because it was so unusual; it’s been about 18 months since my default wasn’t paying via the Google Pay app on my smartphone.

As a result, and because I also have played around with buying, selling, and holding cryptocurrencies, that a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) would be a benign thing. Sadly, as Edward Snowden explains, they really are not. His latest article is well worth a read in its entirety.

Rather, I will tell you what a CBDC is NOT—it is NOT, as Wikipedia might tell you, a digital dollar. After all, most dollars are already digital, existing not as something folded in your wallet, but as an entry in a bank’s database, faithfully requested and rendered beneath the glass of your phone.

Neither is a Central Bank Digital Currency a State-level embrace of cryptocurrency—at least not of cryptocurrency as pretty much everyone in the world who uses it currently understands it.

Instead, a CBDC is something closer to being a perversion of cryptocurrencyor at least of the founding principles and protocols of cryptocurrency—a cryptofascist currency, an evil twin entered into the ledgers on Opposite Day, expressly designed to deny its users the basic ownership of their money and to install the State at the mediating center of every transaction.

Source: Your Money and Your Life – by Edward Snowden – Continuing Ed — with Edward Snowden