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[] Bruce Schneier zu den Cyber-Folgen der Anschlaege,
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 11:41:36 -0500
From: Bruce Schneier <schneier -!
- counterpane -
To: crypto-gram -!
- chaparraltree -
Subject: CRYPTO-GRAM, September 15, 2001
Achtet auf die Details am Ende, mit Links. Alles dabei: Carnivore,
Verschluesselung, Wiretapping,... 


               September 15, 2001

               by Bruce Schneier



            11 September 2001

Both sides of the calendar debate were wrong; the new century began on 11 
September 2001.

All day I fielded phone calls from reporters looking for the "computer 
security angle" to the story.  I couldn't find one, although I expect 
several to come out of the aftermath.

Calls for increased security began immediately.  Unfortunately, the 
quickest and easy way to satisfy those demands is by decreasing 
liberties.  This is always short sighted; real security solutions exist 
that preserve the free society that we all hold dear, but they're harder to 
find and require reasoned debate.  Strong police forces without 
Constitutional limitations might appeal to those wanting immediate safety, 
but the reality is the opposite.  Laws that limit police power can increase 
security, by enforcing honesty, integrity, and fairness.  It is our very 
liberties that make our society as safe as it is.

In times of crisis it's easy to disregard these liberties or, worse, to 
actively attack them and stigmatize those who support them.  We've already 
seen government proposals for increased wiretapping capabilities and 
renewed rhetoric about encryption limitations.  I fully expect more 
automatic surveillance of ordinary citizens, limits on information flow and 
digital-security technologies, and general xenophobia.  I do not expect 
much debate about their actual effectiveness, or their effects on freedom 
and liberty.  It's easier just to react.  In 1996, TWA Flight 800 exploded 
and crashed in the Atlantic.  Originally people thought it was a missile 
attack.  The FBI demanded, and Congress passed, a law giving law 
enforcement greater abilities to expel aliens from the country.  Eventually 
we learned the crash was caused by a mechanical malfunction, but the law 
still stands.

We live in a world where nation states are not the only institutions which 
wield power.  International bodies, corporations, non-governmental 
organizations, pan-national ethnicities, and disparate political groups all 
have the ability to affect the world in an unprecedented manner.  As we 
adjust to this new reality, it is important that we don't become the very 
forces we abhor.  I consider the terrorist attacks on September 11th to be 
an attack against America's ideals.  If our freedoms erode because of those 
attacks, then the terrorists have won.

The ideals we uphold during a crisis define who we are.  Freedom and 
liberty have a price, and that price is constant vigilance so it not be 
taken from us in the name of security.  Ben Franklin said something that 
was often repeated during the American Revolutionary War: "They that can 
give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve 
neither liberty nor safety."  It is no less true today.

Senate Amendment 1562, adopted Thursday, will expand Federal wiretapping 

Calls to ban encryption:

Re-emergence of Carnivore:

Erosions of civil liberties are coming:

Other essays:

"Americans must rethink how to safeguard the country without bartering away 
the rights and privileges of the free society that we are defending. The 
temptation will be great in the days ahead to write draconian new laws that 
give law enforcement agencies - or even military forces - a right to 
undermine the civil liberties that shape the character of the United 
States. President Bush and Congress must carefully balance the need for 
heightened security with the need to protect the constitutional rights of 
             - The New York Times, 12 Sep 01

"Our values, our resolve, our commitment, our sense of community will serve 
us well. I am confident that, as a nation, we will seek and serve justice. 
Our Nation, my neighbors and friends in Vermont demand no less, but we must 
not let the terrorists win. If we abandon our democracy to battle them, 
they win. If we forget our role as the world's leader to defeat them, they 
win. And we will win. We will maintain our democracy, and with justice, we 
will use our strength."
             - Sen. Patrick Leahy, 12 Sep 01

"History teaches that grave threats to liberty often come in times of 
urgency, when constitutional rights seem too extravagant to endure."
             - Justice Thurgood Marshall, 1989

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