Wonderful idea from Deutsche Telekom. Yesterday it said it would launch a clean pipe secure service for small companies that cannot afford their own security. For a fixed monthly fee small companies will be able to access the internet via DT’s own secure data centres. “Hackers will have no chance,” said management board member Reinhard Clemens. Well, we’ll just gloss over that, and accept it at face value.
“The ‘clean pipe’ project, in which Deutsche Telekom partners with RSA – part of U.S. technology firm EMC – is in a test phase and scheduled to hit the market early next year,” reports Reuters.
So, just a little due diligence required before I sign up…
OK, Deutsche Telekom owns T-Mobile. T-Mobile “operates the fourth and fifth largest wireless networks in the U.S. market with 45 million customers and annual revenues of $21.35 billion.” (Wikipedia). Slight problem; that means that T-Mobile is subject to FISA in the US – and the US gets DT more than $20 billion.
OK, RSA is a huge name in encryption. That’s got to be good (even though it is, well, yes, an American company). RSA got big and very rich on its invention of public key cryptography. Thing is, RSA didn’t invent it – it was invented by Ellis, Cocks and Williamson at GCHQ.
Now the details are rather obscure and still shrouded in secrecy, but there are suggestions that GCHQ told the NSA what it had discovered, and shortly after that, public key cryptography was (re)invented in the US.
I would not for one moment suggest anything underhand in the timing – but given what we now know about both the NSA and GCHQ there is a temptation to ask whether public key cryptography would have been allowed to develop if the very same mathematicians who produced it had not also discovered a way to unpick it.
Mathematicians and cryptographers tell us that cryptography based on the difficulty in factoring large nearly primes is valid.
And that’s the point. But.
Thank you NSA. Thank you GCHQ. You have reduced a wonderful and exciting internet into something dirty and distrustful. Thank you for removing any possibility of trust anywhere.
What irony. As I link to my story on over-hyping the China threat, LinkedIn links to a story that over-hypes the same story. This one is from The Independent: “Microsoft admits millions of computers could be infected with malware before they’re even out of the box”. I’m afraid that I missed both the ‘millions’ and ‘before they’re even out of the box’ comments from Microsoft. Oh, no, I didn’t – they’re not there.
Prejudice is the difference and depth between any point of view and our own. If someone agrees with us, that person is unprejudiced; if someone disagrees with us, that person is prejudiced – either against us personally or at least our point of view. The ‘difference’ is a measure of distance in argument; the ‘depth’ is a measure of entrenchment despite argument. To be truly prejudiced, someone must have a different view and be impervious to logical and compelling argument.
So, from my point of view, anyone who disagrees with me and refuses to listen to me is prejudiced (and requires educational redirection). To them, it is I who is prejudiced and requires re-educating – but that is just a measure of their prejudice. I make this point so that any person who reads this post and flatly refuses to agree with me can understand just how prejudiced he or she really is.
OK – so I came across this article in governing.com, written by Steve Towns. It starts:
Until cybersecurity standards are in place, security professionals worry that terrorists could shut down large swaths of the U.S. economy with the click of a mouse.
My hackles rise. Typical government-sponsored fear-mongering to get the people to accept loss of freedom to an increasingly authoritarian government in exchange for the fallacy of security.
The second paragraph continues
Dan Lohrmann has been in the information security business for the bulk of the past decade, and he’s scratching his head over the continued inability of Congress to enact nationwide cybersecurity protections.
I don’t know Mr Lohrmann, but I scratch my own head that any thinking person can be taken in by this government claptrap. So I need to know more about Mr Lohrmann. Enter LinkedIn. A quick search reveals
Since his career began as an [sic] computer systems analyst at the National Security Agency (NSA) in the 1980s, Daniel J. Lohrmann has been a recognized leader in addressing the importance of global computer networks and security.
NSA huh? Well that explains it all. Just another pro-government, un thinking, pre-packaged, prejudiced apologist.
But seriously, I beseech all citizens of the land of the free and the home of the brave to stop and ask, just how much of that freedom am I willing to give up for the promise of unquantified, un-guaranteed, undeliverable, vote-winning security?