1994-07-22 - Re: “Key Escrow” — the very idea

Header Data

From: rah@shipwright.com (Robert Hettinga)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: b9e14f150074f3c203bf08af278218295acc68106cd833b99db756ebc8086fac
Message ID: <199407220113.VAA05344@zork.tiac.net>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1994-07-22 01:15:11 UTC
Raw Date: Thu, 21 Jul 94 18:15:11 PDT

Raw message

From: rah@shipwright.com (Robert Hettinga)
Date: Thu, 21 Jul 94 18:15:11 PDT
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Re: "Key Escrow" --- the very idea
Message-ID: <199407220113.VAA05344@zork.tiac.net>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

At  4:49 PM 7/21/94 -0700, Mike_Spreitzer.PARC@xerox.com wrote:
>(1) I'm not an anarchist.

I'm a congenital republican.

>(2) I think crimes can be committed in cyberspace...

So do I.

>(4) If you accept points (1) and (2) above, you're left wanting a way to
>implement searches in cyberspace when due process is followed.

[Plea for better key escrow removed]

I've never gotten into the Clipper discussion before now.  I've assumed
(somewhat lazily, I might add) that market forces would kill it, if nothing
else.  I am much more in other consequences of strong-crypto and global
public-access computer networks; e$ and all that...

I'm not so sure that wiretapping was ever a good idea, but the "private
life" of the technology which enabled it ensured its use. Like machine
guns, nuclear weapons and semi-automatic firearms, weapons (wiretapping is
as surely a weapon as any of the above) will be used.  Fortunately,
counter-weapons arise.

Gentlemen didn't read each other's mail because they couldn't do it
practically. Telephony and signals intellegence changed that. People found
that they could, and they did it. Now the technological pendulum has swung
back to the days where letters were sealed in wax with unique seals.

I would like to propose, probably not the first time on this list, an
acceptable, time-honored method of determining the contents of a secure
conversation.  Snitches.

That's they used before wiretaps, and it seemed to work well enough then.
A contempt of court citation for refusing a warranted search seems strong
enough to handle the rest of a government's prosecutory urges.


Robert Hettinga  (rah@shipwright.com) "There is no difference between someone
Shipwright Development Corporation     who eats too little and sees Heaven and
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