[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: (Fwd) Re: Law enforcement and PGP ban in Australia

>X-News: uqvax aus.net.policy:286
>From: Peter Merel <[email protected]>
>Subject:Open Letter from Steve Orlowski
>Date: 18 Aug 95 06:52:32 GMT
>I've received something that purports to be an open letter from Steve
>Orlowski. Be warned that the letter has no digital authentication with it,
>so it may have been forged. However it reads like the real magilla, so I'll
>post it here in the hope that it might inform debate a little.
>--------------------- cut here ----------------------------
>Thank you for your comments on the subject of the use of encryption by private
>Firstly I would like to make the point that the debate has arisen from one
>person's interpretation of a paper I gave at a conference on "Cryptography
>Policies and Algorithms"  The full text of that paper is now available on the
>net at
>	http://commerce.anu.edu.au/comm/staff/RogerC/RogersHome.html
>The paper carries a disclaimer at the top that the views are mine and do not
>necessarily represent the views of the Australian Government.  The paper sets
>out the Government's policy on telecommunications interception, which includes
>the issue of the use of cryptography as:
>"As a result of the Report, Australia is, among other TI issues, monitoring the
>impact of encryption in the telecommunications interception area and will
>re-examine matters in 1997 following the opening of the telecommunications area
>to full competition."
>Telecommunications covers both voice and data communications.
>The last paragraph of the paper says that there is a need to expand the
>cryptography debate to cover the needs of individual users in the context of
>the information superhighway rather than current Internet users.  The paper
>also points out that issues such as cost, convenience and public confidence in
>cryptography systems will be the main issues.  Public confidence is explained
>in terms that as long as it meets the general requirement for privacy it will
>be acceptable.  I still maintain that the general user of the superhighway  in
>the next century will be satisfied with a lower level of encryption which will
>meet that and cost and user friendliness requirements.
>On specific point made in the Internet message, the paper does not suggest,
>either directly or by implication, that individuals should be banned from using
>Regarding the use of higher level encryption, the paper supports the concept of
>commercial key escrow where organisations hold their own keys but may be
>required to provide them in response to a court order.  the same would apply to
>individuals who could either hold there own keys or store them with a
>commercial body.  Access to those keys would be by court order and in that
>respect is no different to existing procedures for the interception or seizure
>of telephone conversations or paper records.  There is no suggestion that these
>basic principles, and protection of individual's rights in general, should be
>If individuals were to use lower level encryption there would be no need for
>them to maintain copies of any keys for such systems.  To my mind this is
>preferable to a requirement for keys to be maintained for all encryption
>systems, which could be the result if universal key escrow were introduced.
>Finally on the question of interception, the general public expects a
>reasonable level of law enforcement to ensure the protection of their person
>and property.  Governments are required to find a balance between this and the
>rights of individuals to privacy.  Part of this balance is to ensure that law
>enforcement authorities convince a court that there is a need to carry out an
>interception.  There is no suggestion that this fundamental approach should be
>changed.  The paper certainly does not suggest that the Attorney-General's
>Department should become a centralised interception authority.  In fact such a
>role would not be consistent with its role as a source of advice to Government.
>I hope the above clarifies both the Government's policy and my personal views
>on these matters.
>I consider this to be an open letter and have no objection to it being used as
>Yours sincerely
>Steve Orlowski