Tech Policy Podcast

#58: Banning Encryption

April 11, 2016

Last week, a pair of Senators introduced a bill that was overwhelmingly described by technology experts as “ludicrous, dangerous, and technically illiterate.” That’s because critics say the bill would effectively ban end-to-end encryption, a basic practice of digital security that protects privacy and cybersecurity but can also be used by terrorists and criminals to avoid detection. The “Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016” would mandate that a company like WhatsApp, with other a billion users, be able to produce the plaintext of any message sent over its platform. Is this even technically possible? What would happen to companies that refuse to comply? Joining Evan to sort out the details is Julian Sanchez, Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute.

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