NSA

Encrypted Email Providers Shutter Services To Protect Users from Government Snoops

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Lavabit
Democracy Now

Last week, two companies, first Lavabit (as noted by Scott Shackford) and then Silent Circle, shut down their encrypted email services abruptly and with no warning. Lavabit's announcement was both cryptic and frightening, with owner Ladar Levison strongly implying that the move came to avoid submitting to government surveillance demands. Silent Circle  CEO Mike Janke then explicitly stated that his firm was closing the company's email service without warning so the U.S. government would have no opportunity to seize data. Both moves are sad, but commendable, and they stand as scathing indictments of U.S. law and officials. They also suggest that at least one industry, and its related talent and technology, are likely to move off-shore.

Levison's statement reads, in part:

I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what's going on–the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise. As things currently stand, I cannot share my experiences over the last six weeks, even though I have twice made the appropriate requests.

In an interview with Democracy Now, Levison added:

I think if the American public knew what our government was doing, they wouldn't be allowed to do it anymore, which is why I'm here in D.C. today speaking to you. My hope is that, you know, the media can uncover what's going on, without my assistance, and, you know, sort of pressure both Congress and our efforts through the court system to, in effect, put a cap on what it is the government is entitled to in terms of our private communications….

[T]here's information that I can't even share with my lawyer, let alone with the American public. So if we're talking about secrecy, you know, it's really been taken to the extreme. And I think it's really being used by the current administration to cover up tactics that they may be ashamed of.

Silent Circle openly acted as a follow-on to Lavabit's move, announcing:

Silent Circle has preemptively discontinued Silent Mail service to prevent spying.

We designed our phone, video, and text services (Silent Phone, Text and Eyes) to be completely end-to-end secure with all cryptography done on the clients and our exposure to your data to be nil. The reasons are obvious—the less of your information we have, the better it is for you and for us.

Silent Mail has thus always been something of a quandary for us. Email that uses standard Internet protocols cannot have the same security guarantees that real-time communications has. There are far too many leaks of information and metadata intrinsically in the email protocols themselves. Email as we know it with SMTP, POP3, and IMAP cannot be secure.

And yet, many people wanted it. Silent Mail has similar security guarantees to other secure email systems, and with full disclosure, we thought it would be valuable.

However, we have reconsidered this position. We've been thinking about this for some time, whether it was a good idea at all. Yesterday, another secure email provider, Lavabit, shut down their system less they "be complicit in crimes against the American people." We see the writing on the wall, and we have decided that it is best for us to shut down Silent Mail. We have not received subpoenas, warrants, security letters, or anything else by any government, and this is why we are acting now.

In an interview with USA Today, Silent Circle's Janke explained why the plug was pulled so quickly:

"If we announced it, it would have given authorities time to file a national security letter (demanding information). We decided to destroy it before we were asked to turn (information) over. We had to do scorched earth."

Silent Circle's other products, including encrypted phone calls and text messaging, remain in place because they leave essentially no information for the company to surrender to government officials.

Levison now recommends "against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States" and is discussing restarting his service outside the country, though probably not with himself at the helm. That's because he fears coming under legal pressure as a U.S. citizen unless he's willing to follow the example of Edward Snowden (who he praises) and leave the country.

Silent Circle plans to reintroduce encrypted email once it can offer a service that's as opaque to scrutiny, revealing no metadata, as its other offerings.

By then, somebody in a a more-privacy friendly jurisdiction will likely be offering encrypted email products that are legally immune to NSA orders, the FISA court and national security letters, though available worldwide over the Internet. That company, and competitors, will attract talent, develop technology, and accumulate wealth in a way that will leave American firms falling behind. That's not because saints hold office elsewhere, but because at least a few countries must see more of a future in competing with Google than with the NSA.

Check out the video interviews below.

Democracy Now interview with Lavabit's Ladar Levison:

ZDNet interview with Silent Circle's Michael Janke:

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  1. I think if the American public knew what our government was doing, they wouldn’t be allowed to do it anymore

    I wish. But to 99% of America, the ends always justify the means.

  2. This is like a coup with no shots fired.

    The Constitution is no longer the supreme law of the land.

    The NSA has assumed control.

    But don’t worry! They only want what’s best for us.

    I’m sure.

    1. The coup has been going on a long, long time. Soon, the transformation will be complete.

      1. This is a big step, where they get to run roughshod over the Fourth Amendment, and the First Amendment doesn’t protect the people they’re trampling.

      2. This is how liberty ends. With a great big, silent shrug.

        1. They were smart about it. The democratic processes and institutions, i.e. the presidency and congress and state and local elected offices are still there, which makes people think they have a voice. Meanwhile it’s the unelected and unaccountable bureacrats that really run the show. The figureheads change every now and then, but that’s all.

          1. The only hope is that this administration’s failure to pay sufficient lip service to limited government might just wake up enough people to reverse the trend. It’s a weak hope, but better than nothing.

            In some ways, the last few presidents and congresses have been a blessing to libertarian thought.

      3. it started with the first national bank. After that all the scum saw away to transform our country.

    2. And the best part is, any relaxing of the surveillance state now depends on the people in charge of the surveillance state. If they don’t have a heart of gold and decide to smash it and walk away, it stays.

      It’s not like congress can stop it if they want to.

      “Oh, senator, you want to defund the NSA? Why look! Some wag leaked your browsing history for Friday evening after that party you attended!”

      Or even if you did cut funding for that? “We’re going private! Now we sell the random number initiators for those RSA keys to companies controlled by the Chinese military”

      1. Only Batman can be trusted to destroy the panopticon once he has implemented it. Vote Batman for NSA director 2016!

      2. I remember reading statements from Rand Paul suggesting that he wasn’t allowed to tell us what was going on.

        We’re just the people. We’re not allowed to know.

        1. I thought that was Ron Wyden. I’m not sure Rand is on the Senate intelligence committee or not. If not, he probably doesn’t even know the full extent of what the NSA is doing.

          1. That’s bullshit. I heard Peter King say that everyone on Capitol Hill knows exactly what’s going on and they’re all really well informed and and and… Muslims!

            1. That’s bullshit. I heard IRA terrorist cheerleader Peter King

              Fixed it for you.

      3. Sadly, that would take courage from people with the least courage in the entire country.

    3. The NSA is staffed by hardworking patriots! PATRIOTS! Peter King told me so! It must be true!

  3. As things currently stand, I cannot share my experiences over the last six weeks, even though I have twice made the appropriate requests.

    Translation: it’s 100 times worse than you think. But he can’t say so.

    1. That’s a terrifying statement.

      1. Well here’s some good news: soon even implying that the NSA is doing something wrong will be illegal, and you won’t have to worry your pretty little head about it anymore.

        1. You guys obviously want the terrorists to win, and you hate children too.

          1. Johnny, tell al Qaeda what they’ve won.

            1. Johnny, tell al Qaeda what they’ve won.

              Your civil liberties! That’s right, the Civil Liberties Dart Board is completely new for the 2013. The board is now 1/2 the size of last year’s model and the new GreenJobs electric motor spins the board at nearly 200 RPM, making it nearly impossible to hit! Great for SWAT raids!

          2. The terrorists hated us for our freedom, so they’ll surely love us now.

          3. Don’t be silly, everyone knows that Hugh loves children. That’s why he keeps a clown costume in the back of his windowless white van.

            Although you’re right that he wants the terrorists to win.

            1. al Qaeda has better health insurance!

              1. Hugh, I think you read the forms wrong, paradise and eternal bliss are part of the LIFE insurance package. Their health insurance plan just says “Please see section 5.b. ‘martyrdom'”…

                Oh wait, I see your point.

        2. We can all take solace in the fact that our new NSA overlords are really dedicated and patriotic, though. I know because one of our politicians told me.

          ’cause if we have to have an overlord (and according to one of our politicians, we do), it’s really important that it be a dedicated and patriotic overlord.

          1. And questioning your overlords is slander.

    2. This is why people who want to call Edward Snowden a traitor can bite my shiny metal ass. It took some serious balls for him to let people know what’s really been going on, and rare is the person willing to do so.

  4. That’s a terrifying statement.

    Not nearly as terrifying as

    [T]here’s information that I can’t even share with my lawyer, let alone with the American public. So if we’re talking about secrecy, you know, it’s really been taken to the extreme. And I think it’s really being used by the current administration to cover up tactics that they may be ashamed of.

    What the fucking fuck? Since when can’t a man, while being forced to deal with government, engage with an attorney in order to navigate the minefield the have inevitably set out for him?

    Fuck Obama. Fuck the NSA.

    1. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

      1. You are forgetting about the secret parts of the Constitution that contains exceptions to all that, because it’s written in special ink you can only see with special glasses issued by the government.

        1. Executive. Privilege.

          Appointed. Bureaucrats.

          Regulatory. Agencies.

          You lose, citizen.

          1. And
            Secret Judges
            of Secret Courts
            making Secret Interpretations
            of Secret Laws

            Most Transperent Administation in Galactic History

      2. Hey, it just say you have a right to counsel. There’s nothing there about “competent” or “fully informed” counsel.

        1. That’s what they’d say. Naturally, that’s not at all what was intended by that amendment.

          1. You have the right to free speech. Just not that speech.

            You have the right to keep and bear arms. Just not those arms.

            You have the right to counsel. Just not that counsel.

            You have the right to vote. Just not that vote.

            1. If presidents are judged as good or bad based on how well they protected our Constitutional rights, Barack Obama is one of the worst presidents we’ve ever had.

              As far as I’m concerned, the whole purpose of our national defense is to protect our constitutional rights from foreign threats, and if the NSA, instead, used their position to violate our rights?

              Then the leaders responsible should face charges of treason, or dereliction of duty, or something. Any of them that swore to defend the Constitution are a bunch of traitors.

              I hope that’s all still protected speech, but I don’t know. I guess it’s still okay to talk about the traitors, but it isn’t okay for the people who’ve observed their treason first hand to talk about what they saw?

              1. Historians judge Presidents on intentions and big actions. It makes for sexy history that sells. Nobody’s interested in Coolidge, that lazy fucker didn’t even intern 150,000 Japs.

                1. I judge them based on how well they defended our Constitutional rights.

                2. The great presidents are generally also the worst, from a libertarian perspective. We don’t want great presidents. We want very, very dull presidents.
                  Great doesn’t mean leading to good outcomes for liberty. Great means doing lots of big stuff.

              2. arack Obama is one of the worst presidents we’ve ever had.

                One of? William Henry Harrison wasn’t this bad and he was bedridden with pneumonia for his entire 40 day term.

                1. FDR? I don’t know.

                  You get into qualitative arguments about what kind of freedom is more important, and I wanted to avoid that…

                  Suffice it to say that Obama is one of the worst, and I think that might still be protected speech.

                  But if you guys don’t hear from me again, you’ll know what happened.

            2. Hear hear.

      3. Hey, the Constitution doesn’t say that you have to talk to your counsel. Just that you have one.

        1. Can I get that job? Non-counsel counsel? Do you get paid without actually having to do anything or go anywhere?

          1. No, counsel has no right to payment. Involuntary servitude for lawyers now!

          2. Aren’t you already in-house? I thought that’s what that meant.

      4. Is anyone being criminally prosecuted here? I certainly agree that this sort of thing is absolutely terrible, but I think that until he is actually charged with a crime, the not being allowed to talk to a lawyer (or anyone else) thing is more of a free speech/free association thing.

        1. People are losing the ability to send secure email, that’s for sure, right?

          The chief complaint I have about what the NSA and the Obama Administration are doing is illegal. I’m not looking for an impeachment proceeding here.

          Primarily, I’m concerned because what they’re doing is wrong. Hell, even if it is legal and perfectly Constitutional, it’s still dangerous to our liberties and wrong, wrong, wrong.

          1. *EDIT* The chief complaint I have about what the NSA and the Obama Administration are doing is [not about it being] illegal.

          2. I’m not looking for an impeachment proceeding here.

            I am.

            Fast and Furious. Benghazi. The NSA kerfuffle. The IRS kerfuffle. Droning Americans with trial-by-powerpoint after the fact. Droning in general.

            When is it okay to say “we should probably think about impeaching this fucker?” How much shit must a president engage in in order for proceedings to begin. Clinton was impeached for lying about fucking an intern, FFS.

            1. In a perfect world, Obama would be impeached.

              But in the real world, if you impeach the progressive Messiah, they’re gonna make you pay for it for decades to come.

              We’ll definitely have at least four years of Hillary. The real problem isn’t Obama anyway.

              It’s Americans. It’s what’s in our heads.

              1. Besides, if you impeach Obama the NSA problem doesn’t go away. The next president sure as hell ain’t gonna solve it.

                This is an irreversible problem at this point.

          3. People are losing the ability to send secure email, that’s for sure, right?

            Not to excuse any of this — but we never really had the ability to send secure email. It’s in plain text by default. If you encrypt it and send it on, you still leak a lot of information (Sender, Recipient, Subject, in-reply-to, references, content language, machines it passed through, size of the encrypted message, etc).

            Then, figure that there is a plain text copy on your system, and probably on the recipient’s, as well. Might be on the recipient’s server, too, once they decrypt it. There are ways that messages could be stored encrypted again, but it probably could still be grabbed in between the source and destination.

            So there’s a ton of places to get that message, even if it was encrypted.

            It’s good that these two are shutting down rather than give a false impression of security.

            1. Well, whatever it was these providers were doing that they feel like they’d rather shut down–since they can’t do it anymore?

              I want the freedom to buy services like that–without my email being scanned through by the government–and, apparently, I don’t have that freedom anymore.

              1. What I’m saying is that email can’t provide that. Even when you encrypt the payload, too much other information is leaked out.

                There’s things an offshore provider could do that would limit government snooping, but most of those would still have the same vulnerabilities (just read the mail on the sender’s server, or client, or in between, etc.) Most of the things that would really make it secure would limit it’s usefulness to other people (things like rejecting mail coming in from an unencrypted channel).

                1. These guys didn’t shut their services down over nothing.

                  Whatever it was they were unwilling to do for the NSA? I want email service that are unwilling to do that, too.

                  Apparently, all the other services are complying, or, at least, in the judgement of the guys who were running these services, they won’t exist much longer.

                  1. Hushmail is probably a good example of what other people are complying with.

            2. I think it was described as peer-to-peer

  5. And I think it’s really being used by the current administration to cover up tactics that they may be ashamed of.

    I don’t think they’re ashamed at all.

    1. No, they’re ashamed that they can’t abolish elections.

      1. On the contrary, ProLib, elections are vital to maintaining the legitimacy of a democratic government. Just ask countries like Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, Zimbabwe, and North Korea.

        1. See? Hugh gets it. It’s critically important to convince everyone that we live under the rule of law, even though we completely live under the rule of man, because if people are dumb enough to buy the “rule of law” bullshit, then they’re quiet because it’s all fair, right?

          HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          1. Oh, I get it. This has been done before. Augustus being the best example. He “restored the constitution” while actually destroying it.

            1. This has had me thinking about…towards the end of I Claudius*?

              When he’s getting ready to die, and his behavior seems completely erratic to everyone, he confides in his heir that what’s he’s done is set everything up so that his heir be a hero and restore the Republic! Isn’t that great?!

              His heir just laughs in his face.

              Restore the Republic?! Why would anybody want to do that?!

              I swear. I’ve been feeling like Claudius for the last 13 years.

              *Back when PBS would show you gratuitous…–dozens of topless women in Roman orgies! Are you kidding?! It isn’t smut–it’s literary!

              I doubt they could show I Claudius on regular TV anymore. Besides, they’re job isn’t to educate anymore–it’s to indoctrinate.

              1. Besides, [their] job isn’t to [edjumicate] anymore–it’s to indoctrinate.

              2. This has had me thinking about…towards the end of I Claudius

                Everyone knows the correct title is I CLAVDIVS! šŸ˜‰

                1. I, CLAVICLE? Who would watch that?

          2. I used to describe myself as more of a small-state libertarian, or perhaps a minarchist, but after indoctrinating myself with anarchist propaganda and Balko articles I’ve come to Epi’s point of view.

            That is, that a small state and a true rule of law are impossible for a historical amount of time. I’d say that no matter a state’s starting point it will move inevitably, inexorably and axiomatically to a large state defined by tyranny, oppression and a favoritist rule of man.

            1. And the alternative? Anarchy?

              Right up to the point another state decides it wants what you’ve got.

              The Republic’s failure was in not defining the role of government.

              1. Right up to the point another state decides it wants what you’ve got.

                So the justification for known oppression is imaginary oppression?

                The Republic’s failure was in not defining the role of government.

                Think about how the commerce clause has been used and what it was originally intended for. Do you really think the government wouldn’t have grown to its presently gargantuan proportions if it had a more minutely defined role? I can’t prove that it would, but if I had to bet I would bet on it.

                1. So the justification for known oppression is imaginary oppression?

                  Because no country has ever invaded another to take their shit before?

                  Don’t get me wrong GBN. I don’t disagree with you or Jefferson. The course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases.

                  I just don’t think anarchy is the answer. And maybe there is no answer. Perhaps all governments are destined to become corrupt and fail. Making Jefferson right again. Maybe all we can do is keep starting over from scratch.

                  But the following definition (or one similar) would go a long way in slowing the disintegration process:

                  The ONLY legitimate purpose for government is to protect the rights of the individual.

                  1. Because no country has ever invaded another to take their shit before?

                    I don’t buy in to the notion that a stateless society would necessarily be a defenseless society.

                    The ONLY legitimate purpose for government is to protect the rights of the individual.

                    To protect those rights the government is going to need money. To get money, taxes will have to be collected.

                    Once there is an entity that can legally steal all you need is people to promise some of that loot in exchange for power and people willing to take that loot for an exponential growth in government to occur. Add in a shifting definition of what people’s rights are and you get where we are today. The only chance to be free is to live in a historically rare moment before the leviathan becomes unkillable. Anarchy will look mighty attractive when there is next to no chance of “starting over from scratch”.

                    What I mean is that the best state we could hope for will be the one most able to be grown exponentially and the biggest state will be the hardest to shrink. There seems to exist a perverse tipping point where just when a government needs to be rebooted it’s almost impossible for the citizenry to do so.

                    We’ve reached a point where the government uses its power (originally granted to protect our rights) in order to preserve its power. I see it as being very hard to go back from this point.

                    1. I don’t buy in to the notion that a stateless society would necessarily be a defenseless society.

                      Would not be able to mount an adequate defense against those that have bombers, tanks and ships. (Unless you want to live like an Afghani for your entire life.)

                      To get money, taxes will have to be collected.

                      Yes.

                      Once there is an entity that can legally steal all you need is people to promise some of that loot in exchange for power and people willing to take that loot for an exponential growth in government to occur.

                      Limit it. X% of GDP. And require the tax to be a flat fee for everyone. That way government doesn’t get to buy votes with the tax system and it’s further limited by what the poor are able to pay.

                      Add in a shifting definition of what people’s rights are and you get where we are today.

                      Define rights. Negative rights are infinite. The only limiting factor is that in exercising those rights, you many not infringe upon the rights of others. The only positive rights you get are those granted in the founding document.

                      IOW you couple:

                      The ONLY legitimate purpose for government is to protect the rights of the individual.

                      With:

                      A person may do as the wish, PROVIDED, in doing so they do not infringe upon the rights of others.

                      We may not be able to stop the eventual decline, but I think you can prolong it by strictly limiting the power.

            2. “I used to describe myself as more of a small-state libertarian, or perhaps a minarchist, but after indoctrinating myself with anarchist propaganda…”

              There’s no need to pick right now. We’re in no danger of someone abolishing the state anytime soon.

              We can just all agree that the government should be smaller, and if we ever get to the point where the state is so small, that killing it off is viable option?

              We can argue about it then. Until then? Small state libertarians and anarcho-capitalists are on the same path–and we’ve got a long, long way to go before we need to disagree about anything important.

        2. So long as I get to choose between a Red Tyrant and a Blue Tyrant, I’m a happy little pleb.

          /the American Electorate

  6. You know why I don’t want Al Qaeda or the Taliban to take over America?

    One of the reasons is because I think they’d do evil shit like ignore the Constitution, read our email, and listen in our phone calls.

  7. My hope is that, you know, the media can uncover what’s going on

    Those complicit cowards? HAH!

    1. Meanwhile, Glenn Greenwald is lucky he didn’t end up being tried as a spy.

      Some people wanted to, I’m sure.

      1. Has he even set foor in the U.S. since his revelations?

        1. I don’t know.

          If he hasn’t yet, he should at least check with a lawyer before he does.

          1. He’s probably not in any real danger as the US and Brazil now have an extradition treaty. If they wanted him arrested, they could have already done so.

    2. And Democracy Now is one of the worst Obama apologist media outlets.

  8. I await the inevitable court ruling that use of encryption amounts to destruction of evidence.

  9. Somebody help me out with this. Puzzle out the scenario from start to end. You receive a National Security Letter, and you decide to publish it online and tell the government to go fuck themselves. What exactly happens? Presumably they arrest you for something, and you go to federal court, but what are the details of such a situation? What do they charge you with? Is your lawyer allowed to see the evidence, or does a judge convict you without the possibility of a defense? Or do they simply disappear you (e.g., to Gitmo) as an enemy of the state during wartime, without so much as a trial? I’m really unable how to fathom how this all would work were it to actually happen.

    1. I think you’d be treated like Eric Snowden.

      I think you’re at least treated like you’re in criminal contempt of court, and then they think about trying you for espionage.

      You’ve revealed secrets to the enemy.

      1. Could be. Or, you’ve probably already committed several felonies without even realizing it, so maybe they just pick out one or two and go after you for them. That way they still get you, your word is discredited, and nobody can say you were persecuted just for exercising your rights.

    2. Perhaps it already has.

    3. I’m really unable how to fathom how this all would work were it to actually happen.

      Which is the really scary part. It’s a secret government process that only government can write rules for, and only the executive branch can interpret them (or even know they they exist at all). There are threats to even the most basic notion of freedom, and we’re not even allowed to know they exist, and if these rules are used against you, you can’t tell a lawyer or otherwise have any mechanism whatsoever for knowing what you’re being charged with.

      This is tyranny, and unfortunately people are cheering Obummer on for it.

    4. Presumably they arrest you for something, and you go to federal court, but what are the details of such a situation? What do they charge you with?

      Distributing child porn if you’re lucky.

      Or do they simply disappear you. . .

      More likely every day now.

    5. Make friends with someone in Congress and get them to read it into the record.

    6. Plead ignorance.

      I can’t understand legal terms so I posted it online to a forum of lawyers so they could explain what it meant to me.

    7. “Presumably they arrest you for something, and you go to federal court…”

      You presume incorrectly.

  10. Posted this earlier under the Obama ain’t Obamacaring thread, but it applies here:

    Leon Jaworski, “The Right and the Power”
    “Now the President may be right in how he reads the Constitution. But he may also be wrong. And if he is wrong, who is there to tell him so? And if there is no one, then the President, of course, is free to pursue his course of erroneous interpretations. What then becomes of our constitutional form of government?”

  11. Here’s the bottom line. Someone is going to need to take one for the team.

    This is CLEARLY a 1A violation and couldn’t possibly pass muster in an open court of law. Unfortunately, someone must be accused of treason for it to see the light of day. The situation is further aggravated by the media being in the government’s back pocket, and as such cannot be relied upon to care.

    How the fuck do you fight this?

    Protests? Take to the streets?

    1. Start an email service. Wait for it.

    2. Take one for the team? Not likely. They will be arrested without warning and disappear. That is where this road leads, and we may be there already. There will be no court.

      Obama can disappear you – http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ti…..itics.html

      Did anyone who supported all of the shit since 9-11 really honest-to-god not believe it would come to this?

      1. It’s gotta be someone they can’t disappear. A high level politician or a general. This is actually an opportunity to go down in history as a true patriot.

        No, I’m not holding my breath.

      2. Anyone who has more than 50% of their brain cells to rub together knew it was going to lead to this the moment the PATRIOT act and its ilk were proposed.

        And – much like now – they were the people who were swimming upstream as it were, because – you know – fucking scary terrorists, thinkofthechildren and such.

        As usual, never ever let rationality enter into the discussion when you’re promoting an agenda based on fear, emotion or the lining of your (or connected friendlies’) pockets.

    3. It will take someone, or possibly multiple someone’s “taking one for the team”.

      Preferably someone rich, powerful, popular, and generally well liked managing to put themselves into a situation where they recieve a national security letter and then publishing it.

      That way they can’t just disappear the guy, they can’t bury him in a legal avalanche and the Media regardless of their feelings won’t be able to leave the story alone

      1. There isn’t a hole big enough to take it for the team on this one buddy. Not that I wouldn’t be willing were I in such a position.

  12. Sickening.

    I would probably end up in Gitmo. I cant tell reporters or even my lawyer? The fuck you say.

    1. I would will probably end up in Gitmo.

      ftfy

  13. I just found out Phil Zimmerman is one of the co-founders of Silent Circle. There’s a guy who knows what fun it is to get crossways with the feds, even if you win.

    1. Any relation to George?

  14. What a joy to see some resistance to government spying on its citizens. Ladar Levison and Mike Janke are heroes, as is Edward Snowden.

  15. Criminal facilitators! Toss them in jail.

  16. somebody in a a more-privacy friendly jurisdiction will likely be offering encrypted email products that are legally immune to NSA orders,

    Completely meaningless.

    How’d it work out for on-line poker? Americans restricted from using it and foreigners living abroad arrested for breaking US laws.

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