U.S., UK and other countries warn tech firms that encryption creates ‘severe risks’ to public safety

  • Lawmakers from countries within the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance have urged tech firms to develop backdoors that allows them to access encrypted messages.
  • In an open statement, seven nations said that unbreakable encryption technology “creates severe risks to public safety.”
  • While citizens benefit from additional privacy, law enforcement agencies see end-to-end encryption as a barrier to their investigations.



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LONDON — Lawmakers from countries within the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance have warned tech firms that unbreakable encryption technology “creates severe risks to public safety.”

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Ministers from the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand published a statement Sunday calling on the tech industry to develop a solution that enabled law enforcement to access tightly encrypted messages.

“We urge industry to address our serious concerns where encryption is applied in a way that wholly precludes any legal access to content,” the statement, which was signed by U.S. Attorney General William Barr and U.K. Home Secretary Priti Patel, said.

The statement, published on the website of the U.S. Department of Justice, was also signed by India and Japan, which are not part of the Five Eyes alliance.

Technology companies like Apple and Facebook encrypt user’s communications “end-to-end,” meaning that only users can access their own messages. It applies to written messages, as well as audio and video communications.

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While citizens benefit from additional privacy, law enforcement agencies see end-to-end encryption as a barrier to their investigations and have been calling on tech companies to introduce backdoors that would give law enforcement agencies access.

“We call on technology companies to work with governments … on reasonable, technically feasible solutions,”

EU creates ‘hit list’ of Big Tech targets for new regulation: Report

  • EU lawmakers are drawing up a “hit list” of Big Tech companies to target with new regulation, sources told the Financial Times.
  • The list will have up to 20 companies on it, and is likely to include big players such as Facebook and Apple, the sources said.
  • The EU is set to publish proposals for new technology laws in December.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

EU lawmakers are writing a “hit list” of Big Tech companies to target with tougher regulation, sources familiar with the matter told the Financial Times.

The sources did not say which names are on the list so far, but said it will feature up to 20 large tech companies, and that it is likely to include Silicon Valley behemoths such as Facebook and Apple.

Under draft plans for new legislation, the companies named on the list will have to abide by stricter regulations than smaller competitors.

The EU is currently working on a new set of technology laws called the Digital Services Act. It is due to set out its first proposals in December.

“The immense market power of these platforms is not good for competition,” a source familiar with the discussions told the FT.

“Big platforms are invasive, they pay little tax and they destroy competition. This is not the internet we wanted,” said another.

Thierry Breton, the European commissioner for internal markets, told the FT in September that the EU was looking at giving itself sweeping powers to crack down on powerful tech companies, up to and including the ability to break them up.

“There is a feeling from end-users of these platforms that they are too big to care,” Breton said.

This comes as Big Tech companies are facing ever-increasing antitrust scrutiny in the US, with the Department of Justice

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Armenians Fear Turkey Is Back to Finish Off the Genocide

MOSCOW—The fighting in a mountain enclave in the Caucasus escalated Tuesday when Turkish-backed forces shelled five villages including the capital of Stepanakert, according to Armenian officials.Skirmishes broke out on the border of Azerbaijan and Armenia over the weekend and the official death toll is over 100 as a decades-old dispute over the Nagorno-Karabakh or the Republic of Artsakh erupted into violence.Artsakh is an ethnic Armenian pocket that was once part of Azerbaijan’s territory but now hews closely to Armenia against the wishes of Turkey, which has lucrative oil and gas deals with Azerbaijan and a long-standing enmity with Armenia.Turkey Sends ISIS Warlord to Azerbaijan to Face Off Against Putin’s Armenian Allies“We fight not only with Azerbaijan, with Turkey and thousands of its mercenary soldiers from the Middle East,” Masis Mailyan, foreign minister of the self-proclaimed Republic of Artsakh, told The Daily Beast in a phone interview on Tuesday. “This morning the attackers shelled an Armenian town of Vardenis. This is the continuation of the Turkish genocide against Armenian people. The genocide, that the U.S. Congress officially recognized in a resolution last year, affirming that the Turkey exterminated 1.5 million Armenians.”Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan has fueled the war between Azerbaijan and Armenia, but he blames mediators for failing to solve the territorial dispute since a ceasefire in 1994. “The United States, Russia and France have not been able to resolve the conflict for almost 30 years. On the contrary, they are doing everything they can to prolong the problem,” Erdogan said in half an hour speech on Tuesday. “Azerbaijan has already listened to you for 30 years! But whose lands are occupied? Azerbaijan’s!”Civilians, including women and children, were reported killed on both sides. Tanks burned, armed drones

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