Phil Zimmerman: is the EU declaring war on encryption?

Phil Zimmerman: is the EU declaring war on encryption?

Whilst cybersecurity experts disagree on many topics, there is one statement that unites subject matter experts: end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is the most secure technology for protecting sensitive information online.

Social media giants relentlessly misuse and abuse user data through a sophisticated behavioural advertising-driven business model, and cybercriminals are constantly refining their techniques to access valuable data assets… in short, the need for this technology has never been greater - which makes the emergence and resurfacing of new/existing proposals surrounding government agency backdoors hugely alarming.

The return of unwelcome news

This debate was sparked once more by a press report outlining a recent EU resolution draft. The ambiguous language used within the draft leans towards a few different outcomes, the most alarming of which imagines a symbiosis between strong encryption and third-party access to the data protected by this encryption.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time 3rd parties have proposed backdoor solutions - earlier this year, the lawmakers behind Five Eyes revived this topic and urged the tech industry to embed solutions into their encryption products – a move that would allow access to readable user content for legal authorities.

As zero knowledge encryption experts, we feel now is the time to dig in, defend our position on encryption and re-affirm our opinions on online privacy and backdoor technology with the help of the next under CTRL guest!

"If privacy is outlawed, only outlaws will have privacy."

There probably isn’t a better qualified person on the planet to discuss the pitfalls of encryption regulation than legendary cryptographer, computer scientist and Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) inventor Phil Zimmerman.

Phil’s successes as a cryptographer (specifically, one whose infamy made him the subject of a 3 year investigation by the US government) make him the perfect companion and podcast guest to join Tresorit’s CEO and co-founder Istvan Lam - himself a key figure in Europe’s narrative around privacy platforms - across an under CTRL installment spanning a diverse set of topics.

Read below for an overview of what to expect from the next 67 minutes spent in the company of two encryption experts:

  • Details of the 90’s ‘crypto war’, and what Phil considers to be a true success story in the fight against cybercrime.
  • The true consequences of implementing backdoors into encryption services in the eyes of both our experts
  • What Istvan Lam means by ‘Pandora’s Box’ in the context of encryption legislation

If you’ve enjoyed listening to this episode, follow the under CTRL podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts for regular interviews with encryption thought leaders – and don’t forget to share your feedback and stay connected with all things Tresorit through our official Twitter and LinkedIn channels.