#CyberFLASH: Canada’s police chiefs: “We need laws that force cybercriminals to reveal their passwords”

image-3The news that Canada’s police chiefs are advocating for federal laws that would compel individuals to provide electronic passwords with a judge’s consent isn’t sitting well with some members of Canada’s IT community.

Earlier this week at its annual conference in Ottawa, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) passed a resolution that formally requests legal measures to lawfully unlock digital evidence, citing the rise of cybercriminals who are using encryption tools to hide illicit activities as the impetus.

During a news conference on Tuesday, RCMP Assistant Commissioner Joe Oliver noted that at present under Canadian law, police cannot compel individuals to comply with a request to provide a password during an investigation. Law enforcement needs to keep pace with modern criminals who are effectively “going dark” by operating in cyberspace with tools that mask their identities, said Oliver.

“The victims in the digital space are real,” said Oliver, adding that Canada’s law and policing capabilities aren’t keeping pace with the evolution of technology.

But according to Jacob Ginsberg, senior director for Toronto-based email encryption software firm Echoworx, such as move would be an “unconscionable” one.

“While we don’t blame CACP for wanting tools to make their jobs easier, a law of this kind would criminalize privacy, and it would be unconscionable for a democratic society to draft a law whereby denying a request from police to go through your things, digital or otherwise, would be illegal,” he said in an email.

Read more here

About canux
© 2013 CyberTRAX Canada - All Rights Reserved.
Sponsored by C3SA Corp.