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Re: TIS, SKE, & CyberCash Inc.

>From: [email protected] (Michael Pierson)
>Date: Tue, 27 Sep 1994 19:05:54 -0600

>	    (E) shall preserve the functional ability of the government
>	    to interpret, in a timely manner, electronic information 
>	    that has been obtained pursuant to an electronic surveillance
>	    permitted by law;

This really bothers me.

If the government today has a functional ability to interpret in a timely
fashion information it has obtained, that is purely an accident (that the
communicating parties chose not to encrypt) and the pure accident is likely
to remain (because they will continue so to choose).

However, the government has been trying to establish an enforceable right
to succeed at gathering intelligence by surveillance and it has never been
granted that right and should never be.

Giving it a right to tap deals with gov't actions (permitting tapping).

Giving it a right to understand what it taps deals with citizen actions
(prohibiting encryption).

Citizens have always had a right to try to keep a secret from the gov't and
on this one point, we should not yield one micron.  There should be *no*
move at all toward establishing a right of the gov't to understand what it

Sorry -- I realize I'm preaching to the choir -- but this is *the key
issue* to me and I wanted to push it.

 - Carl