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Re: The Newspaper sez J.Clark sez "Uncle Sam Needed for Net Security"

At 09:47 PM 12/5/95 MET, Andreas Bogk <[email protected]> wrote:
>    Bryce>           To secure Net communications, the government will
>    Bryce> need to have access to private data exchanges using what is
>    Bryce> known as a key escrow security system, said Clark. He added
>Who was the guy who asked why "we" are mad at netscape? Well, I am
>because of exactly this blatant lie.

If you examine the grammar carefully, it's not a blatant lie,
it's quite correct.  If the government is going to "secure" (either
using the definition of "obtain for oneself" or "tie down")
Net communications, it will need to use some obnoxiously interfering 
technique, and so-called key-escrow is one way to do it.

Alternatively, using the definition of "secure" as "protect",
it will need to have access to private communications only through
security systems such as _real_ escrow, in which some mutually trusted
third party holds some assets until both parties have fulfilled the
terms of the escrow contract.  If you don't have a mutually trusted
third party, or one party doesn't deliver an asset it's supposed to,
or the other party doesn't play fair, then the transaction fails;
making sure it succeeds or fails cleanly, and verifying the status 
of the transaction at any time, is the escrow agent's job.

Government Access to Keys (GAK) is something radically different;
the government agrees not to interfere with your communications if
you deliver your keys to some other part of the government.  
There's no trusted third party (unless you trust the government),
wiretap rules generally forbid verifying to the victim whether his
communications are tapped or not, and the deal with the non-independent
escrow agent allows the government to change the terms of the so-called
escrow at any time, unlike a real escrow agreement.  (In other words,
it's a lie, a total crock, and absolutely UnAmerican, and there isn't
even a House UnAmerican Activities Committee* to complain to :-)

[ * Translation for you non-Americans; the term "UnAmerican" means
"something the good honest people of this country disapprove of,
like Communism and Socialism and maybe Communism and even occasionally
Fascism in extreme cases and especially Communism (but certainly not
things like racism or militarism or corrupt lying politicians)"
The House UnAmerican Activities Committee was a committee of Congressmen
who went around investigating anybody they didn't like and suspected of
being Communist, or could accuse of being Communist if they didn't like them.
They were most active during the 1950s and 1960s, and are fortunately gone
by now.]
#				Thanks;  Bill
# Bill Stewart, Freelance Information Architect, [email protected]
# Phone +1-510-247-0663 Pager/Voicemail 1-408-787-1281

# Anybody notice that Microsoft's Wide Open Road ad has barbed-wire fences
# on both sides of the road?