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[liberationtech] Cryptography super-group creates unbreakable encryption

Jillian C. York jilliancyork at gmail.com
Thu Feb 7 12:46:41 PST 2013


I'm not going to get into the politics or pettiness of this because
frankly, I don't care.

But this headline<http://www.extremetech.com/mobile/147714-cryptography-super-group-creates-unbreakable-encryption-designed-for-mass-market>and
the accompanying claims of unbreakability are so incredibly egregious
that I would expect *every single person on this list* to speak out against
those (claims, that is), regardless of their feelings on the actual product.



On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 12:20 PM, Yosem Companys <companys at stanford.edu>wrote:

> Just as a reminder, please let's all try to refrain from engaging in any
> personal attacks.  We're all build and use liberationtech to make a
> difference in various ways, and we're bound to have disagreements.  But
> let's not forget that we're all working toward the same broad goal of
> making people's lives better.  Otherwise, we would likely not be on this
> list.
>
> Best,
>
> YC
>
> On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 11:21 AM, Ali-Reza Anghaie <ali at packetknife.com>wrote:
>
>> Douglas, I'm not sure many people are disagreeing with the end-goals and
>> even Zimmerman acknolwedges the window for verifiable source proof is
>> closing fast (longer than many would have liked as-is).
>>
>> My comments to Nadim are coming from a tact perspective - if the goal is
>> to gain wider adoption and recognition for all the community work, good
>> projects, verified projects, etc. etc. then it helps when you play in the
>> sanboxes occupied by more than the hackers and programmers making it happen.
>>
>> It's not uncommon to have people, who need solutions the most, to be
>> afraid of projects because of the "main name" associated with them after
>> some cursory rant reading. Nadim = Cryptocat, Jacob = TOR, Theo = OpenBSD,
>> etc. etc.
>>
>> It's easy to tell everyone else to pound sand or to roll all activist
>> causes into one for the collective libtech "us" - it's not so each when we
>> take it elsewhere. Just trying to see how we can promote things that look
>> less like personal grips and trolls - and more like building something
>> useful. -Ali
>>
>>
>>
>> On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 11:36 AM, Douglas Lucas <dal at riseup.net> wrote:
>>
>>> Can Silent Circle promoters explain why Zimmerman is excused from
>>> Kerckhoffs's principle?
>>>
>>> Is it because something unverifiable is allegedly better than nothing?
>>> Even if we had divine knowledge to tell us Silent Circle is secure,
>>> isn't it an overriding problem to encourage lock-in of closed source
>>> being acceptable for something as common as text-messaging?
>>>
>>> It is good to have a scrappy talented young person such as Nadim being
>>> pesky to older, accepted people.
>>>
>>>
>>> On 02/07/2013 09:45 AM, Julien Rabier wrote:
>>> > Hello all,
>>> >
>>> > I'm no sec expert but to me, it's so obvious that Nadim is right on
>>> this.
>>> > Perhaps the form is not perfect, but if he's the only one fighting for
>>> our
>>> > own sanity here, as he says, that's no surprise.
>>> >
>>> > We should all be asking Silent Circle to commit to their statement and
>>> show
>>> > us the source code of their so-called unbreakable encryption tools.
>>> >
>>> > Again, I'm no sec expert and I won't be the guy who will do the hard
>>> task of
>>> > auditing and reviewing this code. But as a user, as a citizen and
>>> perhaps an
>>> > activist, I want the source code of such tools to be reviewed widely
>>> and
>>> > publicly before using and promoting it.
>>> >
>>> > My 2 euro cents,
>>> > Julien
>>> >
>>> > Le 07 févr. - 10:31, Nadim Kobeissi a écrit :
>>> >> Small follow-up:
>>> >> Maybe it's true I look like my goal here is just to foam at the mouth
>>> at
>>> >> Silent Circle. Maybe it looks like I'm just here to annoy Chris, and
>>> I'm
>>> >> truly sorry. These are not my goals, even if my method seems forced.
>>> >>
>>> >> I've tried writing multiple blog posts about Silent Circle, contacting
>>> >> Silent Circle, asking journalists to *please* mention the importance
>>> of
>>> >> free, open source in cryptography, and so on. All of this has failed.
>>> It
>>> >> has simply become clear to me that Silent Circle enjoys a double
>>> standard
>>> >> because of the reputation of those behind it.
>>> >>
>>> >> Silent Circle may be developed by Gods, but this is just quite plainly
>>> >> unfair. If someone repeatedly claims, towards activists, to have
>>> developed
>>> >> "unbreakable encryption", markets it closed-source for money, and
>>> receives
>>> >> nothing but nods of recognition and applause from the press and even
>>> >> from *security
>>> >> experts* (?!) then something is seriously wrong! No one should be
>>> allowed
>>> >> to commit these wrongs, not even Silent Circle.
>>> >>
>>> >> I feel like I'm fighting for our own sanity here. Look at what you're
>>> >> allowing to happen!
>>> >>
>>> >>
>>> >> NK
>>> >>
>>> >>
>>> >> On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 10:15 AM, Nadim Kobeissi <nadim at nadim.cc>
>>> wrote:
>>> >>
>>> >>> On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 4:11 AM, Christopher Soghoian <
>>> chris at soghoian.net>wrote:
>>> >>>
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>> It is clear that you seem to have developed a foaming-in-the-mouth,
>>> >>>> irrational hate of Silent Circle. As such, anyone who fails to
>>> denounce
>>> >>>> Phil Zimmermann as the great Satan is, in your eyes, some kind of
>>> corrupt
>>> >>>> shill.
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>
>>> >>> Chris,
>>> >>> You have repeatedly stood up asking VoIP software to be more
>>> transparent
>>> >>> about their encryption. You have repeatedly stood up when the media
>>> >>> overblew coverage into hype.
>>> >>>
>>> >>> However, Silent Circle remains *the only case* where you remain
>>> mentioned
>>> >>> regularly in articles on the company, where you make a point to
>>> completely
>>> >>> ignore that they are posting everywhere on their social media that
>>> they are
>>> >>> developing "unbreakable encryption", and marketing it, closed-source,
>>> >>> towardsactivists. When I confront you about this, you publicly
>>> accuse me of
>>> >>> "soliciting a hit piece" (!!) against Silent Circle.
>>> >>>
>>> >>> That is what I have a problem with: A huge, clear, obvious double
>>> standard
>>> >>> strictly made available for Silent Circle.
>>> >>>
>>> >>>
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>> I proudly stand by every single statement quoted in that Verge
>>> story.
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>> Chris
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>> On Wed, Feb 6, 2013 at 8:56 PM, Nadim Kobeissi <nadim at nadim.cc>
>>> wrote:
>>> >>>>
>>> >>>>> Chris Soghoian gives Silent Circle's unbreakable encryption an
>>> entire
>>> >>>>> article's worth of lip service here, it must be really unbreakable:
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>>
>>> http://www.theverge.com/2013/2/6/3950664/phil-zimmermann-wants-to-save-you-from-your-phone
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>> NK
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>> On Wed, Feb 6, 2013 at 10:49 PM, Brian Conley <
>>> brianc at smallworldnews.tv>wrote:
>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>>> I heard they have a super secret crypto clubhouse in the belly of
>>> an
>>> >>>>>> extinct volcano.
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> Other rumors suggest they built their lab in the liberated tunnels
>>> >>>>>> beneath bin ladens secret lair in Pakistan...
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> Sent from my iPad
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> On Feb 6, 2013, at 19:42, Nadim Kobeissi <nadim at nadim.cc> wrote:
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> Actual headline.
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>>
>>> http://www.extremetech.com/mobile/147714-cryptography-super-group-creates-unbreakable-encryption-designed-for-mass-market
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> NK
>>> >>>>>>
>>> >>>>>> --
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>>> >>>>>
>>> >>>>>
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>>> >>>>
>>> >>>>
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>>> >>>
>>> >>>
>>> >
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