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[FYI] Staatlicher Zugriff auf private Informationen: Wegweisende U.S.-Strategien?

[Ich sehe diese Dinge durchaus als Ausfluss der U.S.-
Kryptographiepolitik: Wenn der Staat auf die (verschluesselten) 
Nachrichten waehrend ihrer Uebertragung ueber Kommunikationsnetzwerke 
nicht mehr zugreifen kann, dann entsteht ein Begehr nach Zugriff 
*vor* dem Verschluesseln oder *nach* dem Entschluesseln. Die erste 
konkrete Ausfuehrungsform ist das Staats-Hacking, und die zweite 
Version sehen wir hier: Einbruch und Kopie der "intangiblen" 
Informationen *ohne* jegliche Benachrichtigung des Betroffenen. Wenn 
die U.S.-Feds das durchbekommen, werden wir aehnliche Diskussionen 
bald auch in der G8 und in der EU haben.                     --AHH]


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19 May 2000. Thanks to WW, DF and BD.
Source: Interesting People (IP) List. 

Fourth Amendment Sneak Attack 

Reno's outrageous Secret Searches measure. 

By Dave Kopel, of the Independence Institute 

The Reno Department of Justice is very good at being sneaky.  The 
DOJ's lobbyists are on the verge of successfully sneaking into law a 
provision which will authorize federal agents to stealthily enter 
people's homes, search the homes, and not tell anyone.  

The Secret Searches measure is so outrageous that it would have no 
chance of being enacted as a bill on its own, when subjected to 
public scrutiny and debate.  So instead, the DOJ has nestled the 
Secret Search item deep inside a long bill dealing with 
methamphetimines.  The measure is further disguised with the 
innocuous title of "Notice Clarification."  

Subject to virtually no public discussion, the Secret Searches item 
has already passed the Senate, hidden inside the methamphetimine 
giant S. 486. Next week, the House Judiciary Committee will take up 
H.R. 2987, the House version of the Senate bill, which also contains 
the buried clause on Secret Searches (section 301).  The federal 
bankruptcy reform bill (which has passed both houses, and is 
currently in a conference committee) likewise has the hidden Secret 
Searches language.  

If the Secret Searches provision became law, it would apply to all 
searches conducted by the federal government, not just searches 
involving methamphetimines or bankruptcy.  

When conducting searches, federal agents are currently required to 
announce their presence before entering, and to provide an inventory 
of any items they take.  Because the person whose home or business is 
being searched knows about the search, he can exercise his Fourth 
Amendment rights, and make sure that the police have a properly-
issued search warrant.  He can also see if the search is being 
conducted according to the warrant's terms i.e., the police are 
searching only for items authorized by the warrant, they are 
searching the right address, etc.  

But under a Secret Searches law, federal police could enter a 
person's home surreptitiously, conduct a search, and not tell the 
homeowner until months later.  

Even months later, the police would not have to provide an inventory 
of "intangible" items which were taken in a search.  So if the police 
entered your home secretly, and photocopied your diary or made a copy 
of your computer hard disk, they would never have to inform you of 
their actions.  

Should the Secret Searches item be deleted from the methamphetimine 
and bankruptcy bills, it is likely that Clinton will try to sneak the 
item into a gigantic budget bill, during the Congressional 
Republicans' annual fall appropriations surrender.  Take note:  In a 
previous Congress, Clinton was able to obtain authority for 
warrantless wiretaps which had been defeated after public debate 
earlier in the year by hiding the authority in the year's omnibus 
budget bill.  

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