Australia calls for weaker encryption

Hear that? That’s the sound of my head hitting the desk. (Lucky, no brain, so no pain).

Only a few weeks ago, we blogged about how the UK wanted to make the net work the way it wanted.
Now, Australia has jumped into the same pool.

The world’s biggest tech companies could soon be compelled to weaken encryption in the name of national security if Australia gets its way.

Australia is making the calls ahead of a summit of the Five Eyes, the intelligence alliance it operates under with the US, UK, Canada and New Zealand. Leaders and officials from the five countries are descending on Ottawa this week to discuss the threat of terrorism and the growing need for security in a digital world.

And when it comes to terrorists in “cyberspace,” Australia wants a crackdown.

On the eve of the conference, Australian Attorney-General George Brandis said tech companies need to play a part in foiling terrorist communications, and that could mean a weakening of encryption.

“The use by terrorists of cyberspace is an issue of critical concern to intelligence and law enforcement agencies,” said Brandis in a statement ahead of the conference.

“Australia will lead the discussion of ways to address this issue; in particular the involvement of industry in thwarting the encryption of terrorist messaging.”

Long story short, they want the cake, they want to eat it, and they want to dictate what sort of icing it has.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull added his voice to a growing chorus of international leaders over the weekend, calling for a crackdown on “ungoverned spaces” online, pointing to US tech companies.

“We cannot continue to allow terrorists and extremists to use the internet and the big social media and messaging platforms — most of which are hosted in the United States I should say — to spread their poison,” the prime minister said.

“The rule of law must prevail everywhere online was well as it does today in the analogue, offline world.”

It’s just a little bit scary how misguided and broken this thinking is.. and coming from our leaders… all the more so.
Thing is, it seems to make so much sense to them, it’s like daylight, they can clearly see what they want and so it seems unreasonable to them that anyone should say no……. I mean it’s just there, I can see it, I want to touch it…. How dare you say no to me….

Sorry, but that really is the sort of childish thinking that they are using.
The bad guys use encryption, so duh, turn off encryption.
Once again, a clear case of “Im right, your wrong, now, lets talk about it”.

Ok, I need to stop, this is going to get ugly and non-tech related.