Notebook

The Government Needs Crypto-Anarchy

03:08 PM – June 12, 2015


Government surveillance programs have always used the nothing to hide argument as a defense of their work. In a certain sense, it’s great advice for dealing with Cypherpunk nightmares.

Unfortunately (for them), the government does not take its own advice, and employees are living those nightmares:

I’ve worked for the government for 26 years. I went through a security clearance when I was first hired. Then after 9/11, they started doing investigations every five years. My last one was in 2011. They’re typical for people who are part of federal law enforcement. FBI agents used to do them, but at some point it switched over to OPM. They have information on my life and everyone in it for the last 26 years. Now some criminal organization or foreign government has it. It is an Orwell nightmare.

Source: http://fusion.net/story/149831/opm-hack-happened-to-me/

Government employees of all levels need crypto-anarchy just as much as any dark net drug peddler. Everyone has something to hide, and strong crypto is all we have. From their perspective, the powers that be should hope that they can at least overcome their own cognitive dissonance on encryption, back doors, and security. With everything to hide, they have everything to fear.

Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin encrypting data.

— H. L. Mencken, Prejudices, First Series (1919)</cite>

Update

Minutes after this post was published, AP tweeted the following:

Story here: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/d842d757851b4a59aca2aecf2f31995a/union-says-all-federal-workers-fell-victim-hackers

Maybe someone somewhere will eventually learn something?



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