Secure communications firm Silent Circle shuts down email service to avoid US government spying

by 1389 on August 9, 2013

in 1389 (blog admin), Barack Hussein Obama, NSA, privacy, security, tyranny

Silent Circle logo

BBC News has the story:

Silent Circle said it shut down its email service for both technical and political reasons.

“Email as we know it… cannot be secure,” wrote Jon Callas, co-founder and head of technology officer at Silent Circle, in a blogpost. “Email that uses standard Internet protocols cannot have the same security guarantees that real-time communications has.”

By contrast, he said, the firm was keeping its secure voice and text services going because it had control over the infrastructure supporting them and could guarantee that messages were not intercepted or tampered with en route.

In addition, said Mr Callas, it was anticipation of future government calls to hand over customer details that prompted the Silent Mail shutdown.

“We see the writing (on) the wall, and we have decided that it is best for us to shut down Silent Mail now,” he said. “We have not received subpoenas, warrants, security letters, or anything else by any government, and this is why we are acting now.

Speaking to the BBC, Silent Circle co-founder Phil Zimmermann said the service was closed because of Lavabit’s action and because it feared it would be coerced into handing over keys that can unscramble messages.

In addition, he said, email was very hard to make secure. While the contents of messages can be scrambled little can be done about “metadata” which can give clues about who is talking to whom.

The US Department of Justice has so far not commented on the Lavabit closure.

Jennifer Granick, director of civil liberties at the Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet and Society, said America’s widespread surveillance could have far-reaching consequences for its technology industry.

“…the US government, in its rush to spy on everybody, may end up killing our most productive industry,” she wrote in a blogpost. “Lavabit may just be the canary in the coal mine.”

Many Silicon Valley firms and many young voters supported Obama because they expected him to be a champion of privacy rights. Were they ever wrong!

Surveillance Controversy Addressed by Jedediah Bila & Julie Roginsky ‘Markets Now’ – FBN – 8-9-13

Published on Aug 9, 2013 by RightSightings

Major technology company executives are meeting with Barack Obama, behind closed doors, over the controversy surrounding the NSA Surveillance Program and protecting your privacy. Jedediah Bila and Julie Roginsky join FBN’s Dagen McDowell to discuss this issue of major concern to many Americans.

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