DaveNet: Friday, September 26, 1997; by Dave Winer.

blue ribbon Bill Gates on Privacy

From Bill Gates, billg@microsoft.com:

Since I last sent you email on this topic things have gotten a lot worse.

The FBI and the Administration have bills in both the Congress and the Senate that would force all software sold in the United State by 1999 to allow the government to get at the keys without the user knowing.

Besides the issues of this making it very difficult for us to sell software to countries like Germany and Canada who want strong encryption without any backdoor and the issue of how to have the old software work with the new, there is a huge issue of privacy here. The backdoors that the government is requiring would create a huge security hole that could be misused.

I am spending a lot of time on this - calling Congressman and Senators. However the FBI and the administration are suggesting that restricting the software industry is key to fighting criminals. Of course they don't say that criminals will still find it very easy to pre-encrypt the information they send.

For some reason the public isn't hearing about this issue at all. I can't believe there isn't more of an outcry. When it went from an export restriction to a restriction on sofware in the US there should have been a lot of headlines.

This page was last built on Fri, Sep 26, 1997 at 6:16:53 AM with Frontier. Internet service provided by Conxion. © copyright 1997 Dave Winer.