Trafficking of children and women is the harsh reality of today’s world. Governments and law-reinforces continue to battle the syndicates, but have largely failed. In the US, the FBI and Justice departments fall under a lot of scrutiny for the their inability to curb the issue.
Reportedly, US lawmakers and Department of Justice under Attorney General William Barr, as a counter measure, are looking to ban cryptography altogether.
At the US White House Summit on Human Trafficking, Barr rallied against end-to-end encryption. According to him, the ‘military grade’ security features are enabling human trafficking via closed networks. Barr notes in his address at the Summit,
“We live in a digital age, and like everyone else, human traffickers are relying increasingly on digital communication and the internet … and more and more, the evidence we rely on to detect and to deal with these predators is digital evidence. However, increasingly, this evidence is being encrypted.”
Draft Bill Against Encryption
Barr and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) are targeting encryption through a draft bill – “Eliminating Abusive and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies (or EARN IT) Act,”
The bill seeks to ban child objectionable content on websites and social media groups. The intentions are positive, however, it demands a back-door entry for Government officials into the privacy of all individuals. Hence, people using private messenger apps via WhatsApp or Apple devices, will necessarily require to give up their rights to privacy.
Moreover, the back-door entry to the Government could both the exploited and used for unethical activities by corrupt individuals.
Furthermore, the ban or restrictions on encryption would not only effect personal data, but also cryptocurrencies. The value and information exchange on many Blockchain networks work on anonymity and discretion.
Leading financial analyst Thomas Lee from Fundstrat tweeted,
If true, would have some negative impact on crypto and digital assets which are grounded by cryptography
Ever since the revelations made by Edward Snowden, people have grown increasingly averse to private surveillance by the regulatory authorities. The basic idea of cryptocurrencies is achieving decentralization through cryptography and distributed consensus.
However, the above proposed seeks to increase centralized control over individual data and information transfer.
Do you think the bill will be accepted into a new law? Please share your views with us.