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[liberationtech] Whatsapp, a Trojan horse for seekers of easy privacy?

hellekin hellekin at
Thu Jan 15 14:33:58 PST 2015

Hash: SHA512

On 01/15/2015 04:44 PM, Al Billings wrote:
> So, since you can’t trust any software (so you say) produced in the USA
*** Not "any software": non-free software, and software running on
servers subjected to gag orders, as you well know for being a compatriot
of the late Lavabit service.

Since when the LiberationTech mailing list discusses non-free software?
 I thought software freedom and access to the source code was considered
a requirement for considering a system secure.

As you also well know, there's no way to either escape NSA's tentacles,
nor leave the planet.  When you're not subjected to forced silence by
terrorist laws of the USA, you're subjected to illegal cracking of
machines by the FVEY, as revealed by the FBI's "right" to consider any
foreign system as a potential target.

It's very damageable to think that because the reach of NSA and foes is
unlimited, although illegal, we cannot criticize the claims to offer am
allegedly secure solution to hundreds of millions of people by merging
well-intended and "paladin code" of trusted people with an inherently
insecure proprietary system.  It's certainly better than nothing at all,
but from this to uphold it as an acceptable solution is understating if
not dismissing the need to provide technical solutions to effectively
thwart global surveillance.

Most people don't understand the extent of the compromise and will
happily use whatever the experts say is "good enough".  There's a social
responsibility of technicians towards we, the people, that cannot simply
be dismissed as lunacy.  I applaud what Moxie has been doing, as it
provides better-than-nothing for an immediate need of many.  But it's
patching a sieve with tape: it will slow down the catastrophe but won't
solve the bigger issue.

And no, there's no nation on Earth that can solve that problem either:
global surveillance knows no border, although legally it should.  Global
surveillance is totalitarianism "justified" by the conviction the
watchers are "the good guys" "defending" "our" "values"; they decided
unilaterally that because it's technically feasible, they can do it,
regardless of the rule of Law and ethics.  Therefore no technical
solution alone can remove their power, but what serious technical
solutions can do is to remove the support for such power: centralized
services, reliance on servers and proprietary software.

Cloud providers in the USA know very well the cost of NSA's abuse of
power as foreigners prefer using cloud services outside of the Empire's
jurisdiction.  But that is not enough, as TPP, TTIP and other upcoming
legislations crafted in secret by corporate U.S. and transnational
interests of the Northern Hemisphere demonstrate, which are leading to,
or more precisely aiming at removing national sovereignty everywhere.

If we start taking a beaver's dam for a polder, we're not going anywhere.


Version: GnuPG v2


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