France and Germany want Europe to crack down on encryption2016-08-25 03:24 by Daniela
After a series of deadly attacks in France and Germany this summer, the two countries' interior ministers stressed the need for a unified European system for sharing police information. They teamed up on Tuesday to propose an EU law that would enable courts to demand that Internet companies decrypt data to help further criminal investigations and to fight terrorism.
The proposal will be considered at a meeting of the European Commission next month. Predictably, those remarks have raised concerns that the European Union will pass new legislation that would effectively ban secure end-to-end-encryption, and hence outlaw the use of apps such as Whatsapp and Telegram.
French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière insisted that they do not want to ban encryption but "exchanges made via applications like Telegram must be able to be identified and used in legal proceedings."
"This in no way means the protection of citizens' data and communications will be breached. Rather, we should find legal, technical solutions to ensure judicial investigations," said Cazeneuve.
"We propose that the EU Commission studies the possibility of a legislative act introducing rights and obligations for operators to force them to remove illicit content or decrypt messages as part of investigations, whether or not they are based in Europe," Cazeneuve said.
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