“The governments of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are committed to personal rights and privacy, and support the role of encryption in protecting those rights,” began a document agreed to last week. Sounds good. But wait.
The government ministers who met on Australia’s Gold Coast last week went on to explain that the information and communications technology vendors and service providers have a “mutual responsibility” to offer “further assistance” to law enforcement agencies.
“Governments should recognize that the nature of encryption is such that there will be situations where access to information is not possible, although such situations should be rare,” it said. That’s clearly setting an expectation for industry to meet.