Tech companies warn Obama

Tech companies warn Obama
Published: 09 June 2015 (2486 Views)
Top U.S. tech companies are warning the Obama administration against imposing new policies that the companies say would weaken increasingly sophisticated encryption systems designed to protect consumers' privacy.

In a strongly worded letter to President Barack Obama on Monday, two industry associations representing major software and hardware companies said, "We are opposed to any policy actions or measures that would undermine encryption as an available and effective tool."

The Information Technology Industry Council and the Software and Information Industry Association, representing tech giants, including Apple Inc, Google Inc, Facebook Inc, IBM and Microsoft Corp, fired the latest salvo in what could be a long fight over government access into smart phones and other digital devices.

Obama administration officials have pushed the companies to find ways to let law enforcement bypass encryption to investigate illegal activities including terrorism threats, but not weaken it in a way that would let criminals and computer hackers penetrate the security wall.

So far, however, the White House has not spelled out specific regulatory or legislative steps that it might seek to achieve that objective.

Last week White House press secretary Josh Earnest called this a "thorny policy challenge" that has Obama's attention.

While he recognized tech companies' efforts to protect Americans' civil liberties, Earnest, responding to a reporter's question, added that the companies "would not want to be in a position in which their technology is being deployed to aid and abet somebody who’s planning to carry out an act of violence."

The industry letter to Obama also was sent to FBI Director James Comey, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other Cabinet heads.

Days earlier, the United States enacted legislation that will curtail the government's ability to scoop up huge volumes of data related to records of Americans' telephone calls.

The government surveillance was an outgrowth of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States and was exposed by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

The industry groups noted that online commerce has flourished in part because consumers believed their payment information would be secure.

"Consumer trust in digital products and services is an essential component enabling continued economic growth of the online marketplace," the industry wrote.

"Accordingly, we urge you not to pursue any policy or proposal that would require or encourage companies to weaken these technologies, including the weakening of encryption or creating encryption 'work-arounds'."

- Reuter

Tags: Obama,
 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

The newfound freedom to speak our mind

by Mike, Harare | 25 April 2018 | 13 Views

3 game ultimatum for Dembare's Lloyd Mutasa

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 52 Views

Dembare legends raise the red flag

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 40 Views

Pupil steals $1 000 from teacher

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 53 Views

Police undergo customer relations training

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 39 Views

'Chart path towards Zimdollar return'

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 51 Views

Ngezi Platinum to defend home record

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 32 Views

Zimbabwe seeks place in global village

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 33 Views

Govt promise to urgently resolve nurses' grievances

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 35 Views

Econet rewards brand ambassadors in Matebeleland

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 33 Views

Chivayo fails to complete pre-commencement works

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 32 Views

Middle class economy possible, says CZI

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 20 Views

Bribe attempts at Nust DNA centre

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 39 Views

Gangster 'killer' surrenders self to police

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 41 Views

Tendai Ndoro loses, goes to Safa arbitration

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 36 Views

3 men claim paternity for 1 child

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 38 Views

Lecturer tries to bed student in office

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 42 Views

Man refuses to maintain 'drunkard' wife

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 28 Views

3-yr- old drowns in well while mum entertains lover

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 30 Views

Mnangagwa enrols for PhD

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 27 Views

2 presidential candidates for MDC-T?

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 49 Views

Chamisa's legitimacy woes mount

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 17 Views

Zanu-PF campaign hit by 'fictitious registers'

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 24 Views

Khama Billiat contract matter closed, says Mosimane

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 14 Views

Village gossip sparks family violence

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 17 Views

Ritual killing: Victim's body unclaimed for 11 months

by Staff rpeorter | 25 April 2018 | 16 Views

4 die in road accidents

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 18 Views

Zanu-PF embraces devolution

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 15 Views

'Chamisa taking rural folk for a ride'

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 15 Views

'Mujuru party ready to join hands with MDC-T'

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 17 Views

Military bosses must undertake to respect free, fair polls

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 16 Views

Mnangagwa to meet war veterans

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 14 Views

Mukupe, Gumbo renew Harare East fight

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 15 Views

When firing backfires

by Paul Kaseke | 25 April 2018 | 43 Views

New contractor gets Chirundu-Beitbridge highway tender

by Staff reprteer | 25 April 2018 | 21 Views

Nurses, Chiwenga impasse hearing date set

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 15 Views

Chamisa, Khupe fight takes a new twist

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 15 Views

Zimbabwean judge in nasty land row in Namibia

by Staff reporter | 25 April 2018 | 16 Views