Congressional Working Group Releases Encryption Report

The Congressional Encryption Working Group has released a year-end report. Two Congressional Committees formed the working group following the FBI’s demand that Apple weaken cell phone security to provide access to encrypted data on an iPhone. The report, endorsed by both Republican and Democratic members of Congress, finds that “any measure that weakens encryption works against the national interest.” The report also notes that encryption is a global technology, and suggests that Congress should “foster cooperation between the law enforcement community and technology companies” instead of seeking a “one-size-fits-all” solution. EPIC has advocated for strong encryption since its founding in 1994 and published the first comprehensive survey of encryption use around the world. Earlier this year, EPIC filed a “friend of the court" brief in support of Apple's challenge in the FBI iPhone case. The EPIC amicus brief explained that encryption protects the owners of the approximately three million cell phones lost or stolen each year from criminal hacking, financial fraud, and identify theft.

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