13 May 1998

From: Patrick Poole <ppoole@fcref.org>
To: "'jya@pipeline.com'" <jya@pipeline.com>
Subject: The Encryption Brady Bill
Date: Wed, 13 May 1998 09:38:02 -0400

Senate 'Tech-Week' Suffers Setback With E-PRIVACY Bill
"E-Privacy: The Encryption Brady Bill"

WASHINGTON, DC-May 12, 1998-The Center for Technology Policy at the Free
Congress Foundation decried the vast expansion of Federal and
international law enforcement powers following the unveiling of the
E-PRIVACY (Encryption Protects the Rights of Individuals from Violation
in Cyberspace) Senate bill introduced by Senators John Ashcroft, Patrick
Leahy and Conrad Burns earlier today. 

"While many thought that the Brady Bill would appease the opponents of
gun control, the drafters of the E-PRIVACY bill think that those of us
who value our right to communicate privately will be appeased as well,"
said Lisa S. Dean, Director of the Center for Technology Policy. 

A provision of the E-PRIVACY bill will require all software using
encryption security features to be exported, to undergo a review and
technical analysis by the Export Administration. The bill also elevates
the use of encryption in the commission of any crime as a federal

"The Commerce Department's 15-day 'waiting period' for all exported
American software products smacks of the ineffective waiting period
provisions of the Brady Bill," Dean said. "The measures of this bill
will federalize simple computer crimes, while allowing federal, state
and local law enforcement agencies to collude with the National Security
Agency and the CIA to be able to gather evidence and prosecute crimes
that would typically be heard in lower courts." 

Other erosions of liberty included in the E-PRIVACY bill: 

*	Allows the US to engage in crypto-recovery treaties that would
allow the Attorney General to assist foreign governments in obtaining
the keys to your computer.

*	The creation of a FBI 'NET Center', where US intelligence
organizations - specifically the National Security Agency - will provide
the resources and training to federal, state and local law enforcement
agencies to help crack encrypted programs.

*	Expands the authority of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance
Court, who conducts all proceedings in absolute secrecy and permanently
seals all court records, to force phone companies and Internet Service
Providers (ISP) to assist in conducting covert surveillance and physical
searches without any probable cause.

*	Subjects new software products using encryption to an
eight-member export review panel that includes intelligence agency
officials and the administration's export chief.

"E-PRIVACY certainly helps software companies who are eager to expand
into foreign markets, but ignores the repeated concerns of personal
privacy advocates. This bill does nothing to help computer scientists,
such as Professors Dan Bernstein and Peter Junger, who have had to fight
against the Clinton Administration at every point just to publish
academic materials concerning cryptography on the Internet. The
E-PRIVACY bill helps the administration continue its policy of
inflicting a death of a thousand strokes against the First, Fourth and
Fifth Amendments," said Dean. 

The Free Congress Foundation is a 20 year-old Washington based think
tank which teaches people how to be effective in the political process,
promotes cultural conservatism, and works against government
encroachment in the individual's right to privacy. For more information,
contact the Center for Technology Policy at 202/546-3000.