U.S. Defense Secretary says strong encryption essential to national security, not a believer in back doors

“Declaring that strong encryption is essential to the nation’s security, Defense Secretary Ash Carter told a tech industry audience Wednesday that he’s ‘not a believer in back doors,’ or encryption programs that leave openings for outsiders to read coded files,” Brandon Bailey reports for The Associated Press. “Carter said he wasn’t commenting on the FBI’s legal battle with Apple over an encrypted iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino, California, mass shooters. But his statement shows the complexity of the encryption debate at a time when the nation’s law enforcement establishment is feuding with tech companies over the use of encryption in consumer products.”

“Responding to a question about the iPhone case, Carter told an on-stage interviewer that he couldn’t comment because ‘it’s a law enforcement matter,'” Bailey reports. “But he went on to say that for the military, ‘data security is an absolute necessity for us. We’re foursquare behind strong data security and encryption.’ Carter drew applause from the audience when he added, ‘I’m not a believer in back doors or a single technical approach to what is a complex problem.'”

“Carter also cautioned against setting policy on the basis of one case,” Bailey reports. “He urged government and industry collaboration to resolve data security issues, adding that it would be undesirable to have legislation ‘written by people who won’t have technical knowledge, maybe written in an atmosphere of anger or grief.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: BINGO!

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Apple CEO Cook decried Obama’s ‘lack of leadership’ on encryption during a closed-door meeting last month – February 29, 2016
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Obama administration claims FBI is not asking Apple for a ‘backdoor’ to the iPhone – February 18, 2016
Obama administration wants access to smartphones – December 15, 2015
Obama administration war against Apple just got uglier – July 31, 2015
Obama’s secret attempt to ban cellphone unlocking, while claiming to support it – November 19, 2013


  1. Bill proposed in New York:

    “Any smartphone that is manufactured on or after January First, Two Thousand Sixteen, and sold or leased in New York, shall be capable of being decrypted and unlocked by its manufacturer or its operating system provider,””

    i.e BACKDOOR.
    Soon, they’ll want backdoors in PCs, servers etc.

    the Sec of Defense is worried that he’ll get hackers into his hardware for drones, missiles etc. …

    13 year old driving a Predator Kill Drone….

    Mr. Carter you better talk to your bosses and the politicians on the ‘other side’ because if they get ‘backdoors’ through your best bet is take all your cash from your bank account, leave nothing of value on your phone, PC and DIG A BIG BOMB SHELTER.

    1. At least this proposed bill gives a pass to devices prior to 1/1/2016 that flout the search and seizure provisions provided by the Fourth Amendment. There is enough support for Apple for someone to start lobbying to amend the Fourth Amendment provisions.. Any takers?

      1. It’s both sad and scary. I can’t remember the last time there was a presidential candidate (one with a legitimate chance of winning) that I liked…

        Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any political party.

  2. Over 800,000,000 unique Apple credit card account owners and their families better get off their asses and fight with Apple asap!

    Don’t believe the governments’s hype.

    This could be the end of privacy, civil rights and democracy, if you act like “there’s no global warming crisis and climate change, if you act with the same arrogance that made the GOP ignore Trump.

    Stand up for democracy and civil rights, that guarantee every citizen security and privacy.

  3. Great point “it would be undesirable to have legislation ‘written by people who won’t have technical knowledge, maybe written in an atmosphere of anger or grief.'”, and certainly a prime example of that are the Pat Riot and other laws that country passed after the second 9-11.

  4. Writing a draft of a act is precisely what Apple needs to do. Rep Goudy was absolutely correct as oil companies draft acts to protect their industry, as does Wall Street and big pharma. That is how it’s done in Washington.

    Trump and Clinton have to be persuaded to back the citizens in this fight.

  5. “We should let Congress decide”. The dysfunctional Congress cant decide anything (except new ways to circumvent the constitution.)

    Oh well, you voted for them. Have a nice day/.

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