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Re: Crypto = Competitive Advantage?

In message <[email protected]>, Duncan Frissell writes:
>Note to Mr. Bill -
>I was watching CNBC this morning while reading my mail and they had a story
>on the Netscape Communications IPO (ticker NSCP btw).  Some analyst said
>when asked whether Microsoft couldn't just wipe them out that the most
>important part of Netscape's product was that it offered end-to-end
>encryption.  He said that this was important for the growth of the nets and
>was something that people wanted.

He may or may not be right that end-to-end encryption is important, but:

(a) Netscape has documented exactly how SSL should work, and
(b) Microsoft can licence RC4 and RSA from PKP just as well as
Netscape can.

In addition it is far from clear that SSL will be the winning 
end-to-end encryption in the web world ('tho it looks that way
at the moment - a few well publicised attacks - say one agenst
the 40bit keys, and say a man-in-the-middle may make S-HTTP, or
PGP-HTTP look alot better then SSL to the public - or it may not).