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Participate! (was: German Gouvernment plans to restrict cryptography
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Participate! (was: German Gouvernment plans to restrict cryptography
- From: "Ralf W. Stephan" <email@example.com>
- Date: Sun, 22 Dec 1996 11:18:56 +0100 (MET)
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Although it looks like rumours of a German crypto law were a shot
in the dark it now seems time to show to the politicians what would
happen if they restricted strong encryption methods.
I'm not talking about steganography, others are following this line.
One of the interesting effects of a German restriction (that would
be probably more restrictive than the U.S. is now) is that distributed
computing efforts --- the most prominent being RSA-129, RC4 cracking,
and recently, the GIMPS (Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search) ---
will focus on those ciphers that will be allowed in such an
environment. In a way, Germany could be the testbed for both U.S.
crypto politics and probable counteractions by opposing parties.
Imagine newspaper headlines 'Deutsche Bank cipher broken by 1000 PCs
in the Internet!'. Note that if a cipher is designed so that
security forces can crack it in reasonable time then it is also in
the reach of distributed computing projects.
So I'm suggesting to all of you that oppose restrictive crypto laws
to participate in one of those projects that are happening now. Or,
if you have the time and resources, plan and start your own with one
of the possible weak ciphers as the nut to crack. This could be the
Internet at its best.
Thanks for your time,