Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft
20 August 1999. TT DN. Add CDT URL for the Cyberspace Electronic Security Act and DoJ section by section analysis.
The Washington Post
Justice Dept. Mulls Covert-Action Bill
By Robert O'Harrow Jr. Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, August 20, 1999; Page A1
The Justice Department wants to make it easier for law enforcement authorities to obtain search warrants to secretly enter suspects' homes or offices and disable security on personal computers as a prelude to a wiretap or further search, according to documents and interviews with Clinton administration officials.
In a request set to go to Capitol Hill, Justice officials will ask lawmakers to authorize covert action in response to the growing use of software programs that encrypt, or scramble, computer files, making them inaccessible to anyone who does not have a special code or "key," according to an Aug. 4 memo by the department that describes the plan.
Justice officials worry that such software "is increasingly used as a means to facilitate criminal activity, such as drug trafficking, terrorism, white-collar crime, and the distribution of child pornography," according to the memo, which has been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget and other agencies.