“President-elect Donald Trump today named Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) as his choice for attorney general,” Russell Brandom reports for The Verge.
“The choice has already alarmed Trump critics for a number of reasons — particularly his role in drafting Trump’s proposal to temporarily ban muslim immigration — but for tech companies, there may be another concern entirely. Less than a year after prosecutors took Apple to court over an iPhone linked to the San Bernardino shootings, a Sessions-led Justice Department could be exactly what law enforcement needs to restart the encryption fight,” Brandom reports. “Sessions has to be confirmed by the Senate before he can officially take the post, but observers say it’s unlikely Democrats can effectively block the nomination.”
“A former prosecutor, Sessions was one of the FBI’s staunchest allies during the San Bernardino case, and has long criticized companies that design products without mechanisms for government access. As head of the Justice Department, Sessions would have the power to prosecute companies that don’t cooperate with law enforcement demands under the All Writs Act, the same mechanism used against Apple earlier this year,” Brandom reports. “‘We need to be prepared for a full frontal assault on the right to encrypt in 2017,’ says Open Technology Institute director Kevin Bankston. ‘It’s time for folks who care about cybersecurity, privacy, innovation and the tech economy to start digging trenches.'”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Oppose government overreach.
There have been people that suggest that we should have a back door. But the reality is if you put a back door in, that back door’s for everybody, for good guys and bad guys. — Apple CEO Tim Cook, December 2015
The FBI tries to frame this as privacy versus safety. And when you frame it that way, of course you’d say, well, we want our lives. But that’s not the proper frame. Because you can’t do back doors just for the good guys. – U.S. Congressman Ted Lieu, April 29, 2016
U.S. Congressman Ted Lieu says strong encryption without backdoors is a ‘national security priority’ – April 29, 2016
Congressman Ted Lieu asks FBI to drop demand that Apple hack iPhones – February 23, 2016