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The five big lies of the encryption debate

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posted on Mar, 10 2016 @ 04:54 PM
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I am starting to believe that our ahem "intelligence agencies" are getting to hung up on the electronic aspect of spying. The OP nailed a great point


Contrary to popular belief, terrorist cells are not using US-based tech company software to discuss and plan out attacks. Paris and the San Bernadino attacks were planned out in person with little to no online footprint.

This was discussed in my circles after the Paris attacks. It is much safer to rely on non-electronic means to send information. Actually I believe that using the internet and smart-phones for misdirection is a big part of the current espionage techniques against the US. Only fools and amateur's would rely on text messages or e-mails in this day and age. The coded hand written letter is a safer means of transmitting info you don't want intercepted. Time proven methods that are even more effective now that the default thinking in the US is high-tech. Great thread CIAGypsy and good luck on your upcoming debate.




posted on Mar, 10 2016 @ 11:04 PM
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No opportunity to discuss the encryption debate tonight... In fact, they pretty much avoided terrorism discussion (in regards to cybersecurity) altogether. Instead we talked more about intellectual property theft and state sponsored attacks.

We'll see what the next agenda meeting brings...

Who knows.... Maybe I'll just rock the boat a bit in Quantico instead when I head out that way later this year...



posted on Mar, 10 2016 @ 11:25 PM
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OK, I feel this needs to be shared here for ALL on ATS. This is important information that ties into the topic of the thread:

The FBI doesn't need Apple to get what they want. Repeat. The FBI is BS'ing everyone -- they don't need a "backdoor" to get what they want. Snowden said it, and here's a detailed explanation as to why the FBI is full of crap:



But the truth is that even if this feature is enabled on the device in question, the FBI doesn't need to worry about it, because they can already bypass it by backing up part of the phone (called the “Effaceable Storage”) before attempting to guess the passcode. I'll go into the technical details (which the FBI surely already knows) below.


Hm...so tell me more about this "effacable storage...



When iOS decides to wipe out user data because the passcode guess limit has been reached (or for any other reason), it doesn’t actually erase all the data from its underlying storage; that would actually take several minutes. Instead, it just destroys one of the keys that protects the data, rendering that data permanently unreadable. The key that is erased in this case is called the “file system key”—and (unlike the hardwired “UID” key that we discussed in our previous blog post) it is not burned into the phone’s processor, but instead merely stored in what Apple calls “Effaceable Storage,” which is just a term for part of the flash memory of the phone designed to be easily erasable.


Okay, so the data is still there, but the "key" to unlock it is wiped from this flash-based storage. Okay, seems like a pretty easy and smart way to keep data safe.

So, how exactly is the FBI pulling everyone's leg? Well, it's actually really easy to make sure that "key" isn't destroyed, so you can try password after password over and over:



So the file system key (which the FBI claims it is scared will be destroyed by the phone’s auto-erase security protection) is stored in the Effaceable Storage on the iPhone in the “NAND” flash memory. All the FBI needs to do to avoid any irreversible auto erase is simple to copy that flash memory (which includes the Effaceable Storage) before it tries 10 passcode attempts. It can then re-try indefinitely, because it can restore the NAND flash memory from its backup copy.


Well, well...so all you have to do is copy the "key" someplace safe and then you can try over and over again, even if it destroys the "key" in the phone's flash storage. You can just restore the key each time!

So what would doing this actually look like?



The FBI can simply remove this chip from the circuit board (“desolder” it), connect it to a device capable of reading and writing NAND flash, and copy all of its data. It can then replace the chip, and start testing passcodes. If it turns out that the auto-erase feature is on, and the Effaceable Storage gets erased, they can remove the chip, copy the original information back in, and replace it. If they plan to do this many times, they can attach a “test socket” to the circuit board that makes it easy and fast to do this kind of chip swapping.


Wow, that doesn't sound so bad at all...especially if they use a "test socket" like what described. Hm. Dang, it seems that the FBI is pulling everyone's leg, spreading bad information and nearly lying to everyone about their abilities and the actual technology that they're complaining about.

And why would they do this? Well according to the author...



In short, they're asking the public to grant them significant new powers that could put all of our communications infrastructure at risk, and to trust them to not misuse these powers. But they're deliberately misleading the public (and the judiciary) to try to gain these powers. This is not how a trustworthy agency operates. We should not be fooled.


You can read the entire article HERE on the ACLU's website. They even have images of the inside of the iPhone model in question, pointing out the chip where this "doomsday key" is stored.

This isn't rocket science, and I'm surprised its taken so long for the truth about how the FBI doesn't need Apple to make a backdoor.

Now, after knowing the above -- doesn't it makes sense why Apple won't give into the FBI? Apple knows all of the above and no doubt finds the entire request by the FBI ridiculous.

Curiously, however, Apple hasn't come forward themselves to say this though. I think that Apple is staying quiet about this potential avenue the FBI could use in order to bolster public relations...and possibly not piss off the FBI by accusing them of misleading the people and justice system.

So, now you know ...the rest of the story...
edit on 10-3-2016 by MystikMushroom because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 10 2016 @ 11:45 PM
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a reply to: CIAGypsy

Big lies, infowars and propaganda can be enemies of us all. We're all expected to believe that the West can send a bomb down a 9" chimney via satellite technology. We're all supposed to believe that news print can be read from space. Enemies of the West are the target of the claims and, by telling all of us the same tale, the myths get greater dissemination.

The flip-side of the bold claims are when our bombs destroy buildings half a mile away or the school next door.

I think we get into a sort of waltz - a dance with our opponents. We tell ourselves they have 'gone dark' and we need the access to everyone's communications. This propels them to be more secretive and the West then becomes more nervous. We need to justify bigger and more widespread data retention programmes and, ultimately, find ourselves chasing after our own scarecrows. Are we looking for 'terrorists' who are the tech equals of Snowdon et al or is that 'terrorist' really more of a creation of our propaganda? Throughout all this, we're all told how secure we are and omniscient the security services are...

The flip-side is when assholes go on murder sprees and terrorist atrocities occur several times a year.



posted on Mar, 11 2016 @ 05:22 AM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom

The object is to get every user agreement-- which no-one ever reads before signing-- to waive the right to require a search warrant for the FBI to use evidence it gathers from personal electronic devices as evidence in court.



posted on Mar, 11 2016 @ 10:43 AM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom



I'd applaud this post, but I can no longer get to my uploaded images. (Note - I'm at a location where Ads, scripting, etc.. are blocked due to security concerns. ATS has disabled my access to my image stock because of it... Subscription option can't get here soon enough....)

As you and I have both mentioned....this is really the crux of the issue -



In short, they're asking the public to grant them significant new powers that could put all of our communications infrastructure at risk, and to trust them to not misuse these powers. But they're deliberately misleading the public (and the judiciary) to try to gain these powers. This is not how a trustworthy agency operates. We should not be fooled.


It's about access, plain and simple.



posted on Mar, 11 2016 @ 10:48 AM
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originally posted by: DJW001
a reply to: MystikMushroom

The object is to get every user agreement-- which no-one ever reads before signing-- to waive the right to require a search warrant for the FBI to use evidence it gathers from personal electronic devices as evidence in court.


And then you get things like this....

Verizon Collected Users’ Information Without Their Knowledge, According To FCC

*face palm*

Don't get me wrong...the FCC is RIGHT to fine them for violating privacy. But it highlights the widening gap of "Do what we say, not unto what we do...." The government can violate your privacy with impunity, but fine companies who do the same.

Honestly, we need a Congress who will write new laws to strengthen privacy rights and bring them into the 21st century. Remember that the Constitution was meant to limit government reach...not expand it.



posted on Mar, 11 2016 @ 11:49 AM
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And also think of this...

The method to get into locked iPhones is a bit messy...you have to take a chip out of the phone, copy it, put it into some kind of 'test socket' and whatnot and do brute force hacks, restoring the chip after every 10 failures. That's a bit time-intensive. Now, I seriously doubt they have thousands or even hundreds of phones a year that need this special attention -- but if I was one of the people working for the FBI, I'd really want an easier way to go about doing my job.

So, I think for most of the human beings working for the government -- they just want their lives to be a little easier. To them, this isn't about some surveillance-state thing. They don't go home at night to their wife and kids with evil big-brother plans floating around in their heads. They've probably been sold at the office on the idea that it'll make life easier.

People always assume government workers are some other breed or species of humans. They're really not. Just like if you are married to a cop or have a cop in your family you know they're just a human being like anyone else -- they simply have a different perspective on things due to their situation and position.

No...I blame the folks at the very top making these decisions and handing them down, peddling them and justifying them in the name of "security" and "convenience" ... Because at the end of the day, those men and women do a lot more good than harm. It's the people making the big decisions that have the actual agendas.
edit on 11-3-2016 by MystikMushroom because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 13 2016 @ 09:13 PM
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a reply to: CIAGypsy

What side of the debate are you going to take, in terms of what point blank boils down to more access or less???, i agree it's a fine line in that terrorism is prevalent in today's world, but the boogie man is much smaller then the boogie man of our past (Soviets, Nazi's ect ect), i think a re look at the finer points of what can be done to prevent future attacks and data steals is maybe needed, but also a naturalizing of some of the generalized areas that allow the alphabet agencies to peek into our life's is a must, i can tell you from personal experience some of these agencies have been corrupt big time when it comes to human rights in the past (and something NEEDS to be done about that) and my guess is they still are in certain area's, as you may already know.



posted on Apr, 3 2016 @ 06:34 AM
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Sounds like a fun debate, i hope it went well for you, i do jobs in security also, mostly low grad hacker defenses.



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