19 November 1999
QUOTES ATTRIBUTABLE TO:
Caspar Bowden, director of the Foundation for Information Policy Research, said:
Old Draft E-Comms decryption powers (Part.III) with reverse burden-of-proof of key possession DROPPED from this bill - to be re-considered in new Home Office "Regulation of Investigatory Powers Bill" (RIP). See also comment on Queen's Speech.
Apropos RIP Bill (not E-Comms):
"A further public consultation is necessary to establish a consistent system of judicial warrants with effective technical and legal safeguards and oversight. Interception, decryption, and surveillance have a complex inter-relationship which was excluded from the scope of the Home Office's earlier consultation. We need to RIP it up and start again."
Part.I still there (statutory framework for setting up register of Cryptography providers). Threatens unnecessary regulation, BUT linkage of Part.I to requirements for key escrow IS PROHIBITED, as recommended by Select Committee in November.
"FIPR called for compulsory key escrow requirements to be _prohibited_ in March at 'Scrambling for Safety III' - nobody thought this was achievable. We are delighted to see this in the new bill, however there is an apparent loophole that needs to be closed with a simple amendment".
Rules made under Clause 8 could still allow victims whose electronic signatures are forged to be made responsible for them, and this should be outlawed expressly (as it is in the Australian legislation.
"Consumers will not have confidence in electronic signatures if they risk being made liable for forged signatures, and there needs to be a clear rule to prevent this."
Notes for Editors:
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