If the FBI can force decryption backdoors, why not backdoors to turn on your phone's camera?


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Can’t they already listen in via your speakers?


If you were recording something the fuzz didn’t want to be made public, could they turn off your camera? More subtle than confiscating it and stomping on it accidentally.


Why just software? Couldn’t the also mandate that computers be equipped with microphones and cameras that could be turned on? That ALL locks be secretly “TSA compliant”?


Government’s response: “well now that’s just silly, we would never do something like that because we support the constitution!”

Which would remain true, until they decide to actually do it.


Don’t be silly!

They’d want to ensure all locks EXCEPT those on government-owned buildings and equipment be secretly “TSA compliant.”

I think we need another acronym for IoT, the Internet of Things. How about IoBT, the Internet of Backdoored Things.


I absolutely agree that the FBI’s request raises a lot of issues. If government can compel writing of code or compel the inclusion of security holes, the only restriction to someone accessing and using connected electronics are the physical limits of the device itself.

But I’m also intrigued about the implications of Apple’s assertion of 1st Amendment rights to rebuff a government request. Coupled with the Supreme Court’s recent generous speech rights to companies, this seems like a potential wedge for corporations to challenge government rules or regulations more broadly.

It may sound silly, but it’s not hard to imagine a lawyer asserting that requiring a company to issue or provide data, especially electronically via a computer program, is also a violation of the company’s 1st Amendment rights.


So in the upcoming legislation, we should try to make sure the scope of the bill is limited to decrypting devices that the FBI has physical possession of. I think that’s doable.


Not unlikely, the rebirth of the Clipper chip. The last attempt died with the end of the first crypto wars, but the next war on crypto has already begun.


Well the bright side is, there’s no way this new technology will ever be abused. That would be wrong.


Still not sure what to think about the backdoor order that the FBI served on BVD…
There are some nightmare scenarios – I’m looking at you grandpa…


“Bend over, taxpayer.”


What I love is that the new FBI filing insists, again, that this is just about one phone. Right…

[quote]MAITRE D: And finally, monsieur, a wafer-thin mint.
MAITRE D: Oh, sir, it’s only a tiny, little, thin one.
MR. CREOSOTE: No. Fuck off. I’m full.
MAITRE D: Oh, sir. Hmm?
MR. CREOSOTE: [groan]
MAITRE D: It’s only wafer thin.
MR. CREOSOTE: Look. I couldn’t eat another thing. I’m absolutely stuffed. Bugger off.
MAITRE D: Oh, sir, just-- just one.
MR. CREOSOTE: [groaning] All right. Just one.
MAITRE D: Just the one, monsieur. Voila.



Similarly, what’s to prevent them from compelling any company or any engineer to make anything for them, without any regard to the individual in question’s ethical misgivings? Who’s to decide whether what they’re asking for is even possible?


The rule is that it can’t be an “unreasonable burden,” which the government says means that if Apple codes, then asking them to code isn’t unreasonable. So, by the government’s proposed standard your ethics don’t get apply, only whether your skills can do it. Pretty scary stuff.


That’s bonkers.

  • Teachers teach, therefore asking one to teach torture isn’t unreasonable.
  • Engineers design and build things, therefore asking one to design and build a death ray isn’t unreasonable.
  • Doctors sometimes amputate limbs, therefore asking one to amputate the leg of this political dissident isn’t unreasonable.
  • Urologists conduct vasectomies, therefore asking one to sterilise population groups isn’t unreasonable (oh, wait … that’s already been done)
  • etc.


I have nothing to add other than the article image makes me giggle because this is my phone case.


I can’t see the photo, I think you need to go out side and fix the antenna…


In fact, that wasn’t a suggestion. I have here a writ requiring you to go out and fix the antenna.