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This paper introduces a new attack, the compelled certificate creation attack, in which government agencies compel a certificate authority to issue false SSL certificates that are then used by intelligence agencies to covertly intercept and hijack individuals' secure Web- based communications. We reveal alarming evidence that suggests that this attack is in active use. Finally, we introduce a lightweight browser add-on that detects and thwarts such attacks.
Telephone carriers and Internet service providers are frequently required to violate their customers' privacy | providing the government with email communications, telephone calls, search engine records, financial transactions and geo-location information. In the United States, the legal statutes defining the range of entities that can be compelled to assist in electronic surveillance by law enforcement and foreign intelligence investigators are remarkably broad