Government snooping aimed at phone calls and emails can be a bitter pill for citizens concerned about everyday privacy, but how about encrypted messages when you take steps to protect an account or other information and have an expectation of secrecy? It turns out that the NSA can now read encrypted files. If they can’t read your message today, they may soon be able to soon.
From Electronic Frontier Foundation:
In one of the most significant leaks to date regarding National Security Agency (NSA) spying, the New York Times, the Guardian, and ProPublica reported today that the NSA has gone to extraordinary lengths to secretly undermine our secure communications infrastructure, collaborating with GCHQ (Britain’s NSA equivalent) and a select few intelligence organizations worldwide.
These frightening revelations imply that the NSA has not only pursued an aggressive program of obtaining private encryption keys for commercial products—allowing the organization to decrypt vast amounts of Internet traffic that use these products—but that the agency has also attempted to put backdoors into cryptographic standards designed to secure users’ communications. Additionally, the leaked documents make clear that companies have been complicit in allowing this unprecedented spying to take place, though the identities of cooperating companies remain unknown.
Investigations into this program, called ‘Bullrun’ are ongoing.