September 28, 2010

Crypto-plumbers versus the Men in Black, round 16.

Skype, RIM, and now CircleTech v. the governments. This battle has been going on for a while. Here's today's battle results:

BIS [Czech counter-intelligence] officers first offered to Satanek that his firm would supply an encryption system with "a defect" to the market which would help the secret service find out the content of encrypted messages. "This is out of question. It is as if we were proclaiming we are selling bullet-proof vests that would actually not be bullet-proof," Satanek told MfD.

This is why BIS offered a deal to the firm's owners. BIS wanted CircleTech to develop a programme to decipher the codes. It would only partially help the secret service since not even CircleTech is capable of developing a universal key to decipher all of its codes. Nevertheless, software companies are offering such partial services, and consequently it would not be a problem for CircleTech to meet the order, MfD notes.

However, BIS officers said the firm need not register the money it would receive from BIS for the order, the paper writes. "You will have on opportunity to get an income that need not be subject to taxation," MfD cites the secret recording of a BIS officer at a meeting with the firm. Satanek rejected the offer and recorded the meetings with BIS.

BIS then gave it up. However, two months ago it contacted Satanek again, MfD writes. "They told me that we are allegedly meeting suspicious persons who pose a security risk to the state. In such a case we may not pass security vetting of the National Security Office (NBU)," Satanek told MfD.

Subversion, bribes, and threats, it's all in there! And, no wonder every hot new code jockey goes all starry-eyed at the thought of working on free, open encryption systems.

Posted by iang at September 28, 2010 07:55 AM | TrackBack
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