Save our Security — Strong encryption keeps us safe

   Save our Security — Strong Encryption Keeps Us Safe

Leaked docs reveal the UK Home Office’s secret plan to gain real-time access to our text messages and online communications AND force companies like WhatsApp to break the security on its own software.1 This reckless plan will make all of us more vulnerable to attacks like the recent ransomware assault against the NHS.2

The deadline for comments has now closed, but we know that the Home Secretary hasnt given up on this plan. You can still sign up below if you would like to hear about the next stage of the campaign to defend your security.

Read the full petition here

Dear Home Secretary Amber Rudd,

I am very concerned by the draft Investigatory Powers Technical Capability Regulation.

This proposal would compromise my personal security, and the safety of all residents of the United Kingdom.

I ask that you drop the demand that tech companies remove electronic protections, otherwise known as encryption.

The recent ransomware attack on the NHS shows exactly why companies need to be able to develop secure software without any backdoors that can be exploited by malicious actors.

We all deserve to be kept safe by strong encryption. Do not weaken everyone’s security by creating backdoors that hackers and malicious actors can exploit. Encryption is necessary for our personal privacy, for the security of our banking and online communications, and to protect journalists, lawyers, and the integrity of our national infrastructure. Strong encryption means unbreakable encryption.

I ask instead that the UK takes steps to set strong international standards on privacy. This legislation deserves a full and open public debate, embracing accountability for our security agencies.


Thank you.

[Your Name and Email Address Will Appear Here]

Home Secretary Amber Rudd is consulting on proposals to force tech companies and Internet providers to allow “near real time” access to all your private online communications.3

Her leaked plan even demands that companies like WhatsApp “remove electronic protection”, stripping away essential technologies that keep us safe online.

  • Strong encryption keeps us secure. It protects us from identity theft, from ransomware that locks us out of our computers, and from vast networks that would take control of our Internet-connected devices and use them to launch cyber-attacks.4
  • Strong encryption means unbreakable encryption. It is impossible to create a “back door” for government agents that cannot also be exploited by hackers, foreign governments, and other malicious actors.5
  • Strong encryption saves lives.Vulnerable groups will have their safety compromised if services like WhatsApp and Signal are forced to build backdoors. Lawyers will lose client confidentiality, victims of police misconduct will be spied on, journalists unable to protect sources, and domestic abusers gifted new ways to exploit tech vulnerabilities to spy on partners.7, 8, 9

 

The UK Home Office already has some of the most aggressive surveillance powers in the world. This is nothing more than a power grab.10

They also wanted to make these rules — and enact them — completely in secret and without hearing from you. Secretive laws that break our tech and strip away our privacy have no place in a democracy.

The deadline for this leaked consultation is 19th May. We don’t have long to make sure your voices are heard. Speak out now!

If you would like to send a longer response to the Home Office, you can send an email directly to: investigatorypowers@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk

This action is hosted by:

Footnotes:

[1] Investigatory Powers: 'Real-time surveillance' in draft update, Source: BBC

[2] NHS cyber-attack: GPs and hospitals hit by ransomware. Source: BBC

[3] LEAKED Draft Statutory Powers, Source: Open Rights Group

[4] Winning the debate on encryption — a 101 guide for politicians. Source: Privacy International

[5] Encryption Is a Human Rights Issue: Your Privacy and Free Speech Depend on It. Source: Amul Kalia, Electronic Frontier Foundation.

[6] Encryption saves lives. Source: Jon Camfield

[7] Doreen Lawrence: hold public inquiry into police spying or we'll sue. Source: Guardian

[8] Time for Journalists to Encrypt Everything. Source: Wired

[9] This Software Company May Be Helping People Illegally Spy On Their Spouses. Source: Forbes

[10] The UK now wields unprecedented surveillance powers — here’s what it means. Source: The Verge

 

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Press: Ruth Coustick-Deal | Phone: +44 7854 341550 | ruth@openmedia.org