U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ call for a way to “overcome” cryptography met with scorn from a panel of elite cryptographers speaking at this week’s RSA Conference 2017 in San Francisco.
“Any one of my students will be capable of writing good crypto code,” says Adi Shamir, the ‘S’ in RSA and a professor at the Weizmann Institute in Israel.
Sessions’ use of the term “overcome” during his confirmation hearings actually means installing backdoors, says Ronald Rivest, the ‘R’ in RSA and a professor at MIT. He cited a joint Congressional study that concluded that weakening encryption works against the national interest, and that encryption is global anyway — so the U.S. can’t call all the shots.
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