UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s comments about encrypted message services not being allowed under his Government are, to be perfectly frank, horrific.
"Are we going to allow a means of communications which it simply isn't possible to read?" he asked during a campaign speech. "My answer to that is: 'No, we must not.'"
Such a draconian net would capture the likes of Snapchat, Whatsapp – even iMessage has made a commitment to encrypting its messages.
This is not the death of freedom by a thousand cuts, this is a great big gash in the side of ones right to communicate in privacy.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise mind, because this is the same country that has enabled “Filter by default” for “adult content” when signing up to an ISP – and if you want to view “adult content” you have to ask for that filter to be switched off.
It’s also the country with, pound for pound, the most C
CTV cameras anywhere. British Government really is a boot stamping on a human face forever.
We suppose the one laudable aspect of this is that Cameron is being upfront about his tomfoolery. The proposed changes would be implemented if his party is elected at the next election, giving voters a chance to make this a factor in their decision who to vote for. But the mere fact it’s even being proposed is chilling.
And chilling is the right word, laws like this create a chilling effect – where people won’t be doing anything illegal but will stop doing it because they’re afraid of the law.
Where would you draw the line? VPNs encrypt data. In fact SSL would be out too – have you thought this through Mr Cameron? It sounds like you’re getting terrible Internet advice. And then there’s the drip beyond scope here; how could you manage e-commerce services when you’re blocking encrypted data?
When you start heading down this route you end up at China. You end up at Iran. And in a week when the whole world has cried out in unison for free speech, David Cameron’s comments have gone in the complete opposite direction.