#CyberFLASH: RCMP want new powers to bypass digital roadblocks in terrorism, major crime cases

rcmp

Suspected child predators, drug traffickers and extremists allegedly planning attacks or to join ISIS are escaping the eyes of the law because of increasingly impenetrable encryption and other digital roadblocks, according to top secret RCMP files reviewed by a CBC News/Toronto Star investigation.

The Mounties provided access to the files in a bid to demonstrate how investigations of tech-savvy suspected criminals are increasingly “going dark” because crucial evidence is beyond their reach.

The rare look inside active investigations comes amidst a thorny debate and public consultation on Canada’s Anti-Terrorism Act (C-51), which includes proposals to significantly expand police powers.

Four ideas floated in the federal government’s green paper on national security would enhance investigative capabilities, including the power to compel suspects to unlock their encrypted computers and cellphones and a law to require telecommunication and internet service providers to install interception and data-retention equipment in their networks.

But privacy and civil liberties advocates are fiercely opposed to such measures and demand police provide more evidence to justify their request for new powers.

RCMP Chief Supt. Jeff Adam admits law enforcement hasn’t done a great job explaining the investigative challenges of the digital world to the public.

Read more here

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