What default phone encryption really means for law enforcement (and for you)


“What default phone encryption really means for law enforcement (and for you)”

“That you are guilty.”

Ask any police or government official. They’ll agree.


That’s why you don’t ask them.

1 Like

That is already a longstanding cynical philosophy of policing - “no-one is innocent!” It is broadly assumed that your average person is guilty of something, and if you have a problem with them, you find out what it is they are guilty of.

Also, the old “don’t fear surveillance if you’ve got nothing to hide” axiom cuts both ways. Police and government tend to go a bit nuts when they are in the secret spotlight. These turkeys like to strive for their own security. If they push “security” to you which is not secure, you’ve got to plainly tell them that they have no credibility and that they need to step off and do some real work.

1 Like

Which, given the complexity and sheer volume of the legal code, is rather guaranteed. Even lawyers have to specialize to narrow areas, while for we the people ignorance is not an excuse.

This, combined with the previous, is itself a great reason to oppose surveillance.

They squirm so funny when dosed with their own medicine!

That. (The fly in this ointment is that by now they don’t seem to care anymore if we perceive them as credible or not.)

1 Like

Did I miss the class where ‘warrant’ went from being a specially granted exception, permitting you to commit what would otherwise be a trespass in order to attempt to find something, to being the god-given right to succeed at finding whatever it is you want?


It isn’t as if any rational person still believes the USA is a free country.

Think about it. No-warrant wire taps, indefinite detention of citizens without charges, approval of rendition of prisoners and torture, stop and frisk without probable cause, search and seizure without a warrant, no-knock entry, confiscation and destruction of cameras that might have been used to film police acting illegally, police brutality, police shootings that go without investigation, managed news, and the civil-rights destroying “Patriot” Act.

Acts of police behaving illegally, with shootings, Tasers, and unwarranted violence now appear almost daily. Rarely are these offenses punished. Most often “an investigation” is claimed, but soon forgotten.

In addition, the USA, with 5% of the world population, has 25% of all of the prisoners in the world. That means the USA has the most people in prison of any nation in history. Even by percentage of residents incarcerated, not just sheer numbers, USA is # 1

Does any of that sound like a free country?

As Dwight D. Eisenhower said about communism, "It’s like slicing sausage. First they out off a small slice. That isn’t worth fighting over. Then they take another small slice that isn’t worth fighting over. Then another and another. Finally, all you have left is the string and that isn’t worth fighting over, either.


Countries are not free by design. Countries represent the idea of controlling an area. So there tend to be special classes of people “trusted” to oversee this. Meaning that some people naturally end up being more “free” than others. It is basically built into the system. The US was founded on the idea of property and commerce replacing monarchs and aristocracy. Which gives rise to the disparity between “one person = one vote” and “one dollar = one vote”. If people are able to buy influence, the whole thing requires the slightest push to become plutocracy.

Part of the problem with lacking freedom is that most people want their rights to be recognized and acted upon. If you know that each of us is as fundamentally free and able to participate, then there are no “people in power” to complain to. You need to assume and assert your participation from the outset, and be prepared for struggles in daily life if people do not accept this. Don’t assume that anyone will defend you or fix all of this.

My approach is starting to be working on the fundamental assumptions about territory, countries, and jurisdiction in the first place. I have a good feel functionally how everything eventually got locked down this way. There do seem to be things which can be done about it, but they depend upon conceptual leaps which many might not be prepared to make.

Micah Lee makes an important point, about what this development doesn’t do, at The Intercept: https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/09/police-act-furious-encrypted-phones-still-love-heres/

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.