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Apple, Microsoft and Google criticized British agency proposal to Snoop On encrypted Chats


A group of 47 companies, including Apple , Google , Microsoft and WhatsApp , strongly criticized a proposal by the British intelligence agency GCHQ to monitor chat messages, even those encrypted. In an open letter published in Lawfare, companies said the idea would undermine security, threaten confidence in encrypted messaging services, and ultimately jeopardize citizens' right to privacy and freedom of expression. Businesses complete saying that such proposals would require messaging applications to change, practically deceiving users with these new rules.

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The GCHQ proposal was first published in November 2018 as part of a series of trials and does not necessarily reflect a legislative agenda of the intelligence agency at this time. In the essay, two high-ranking British intelligence officials argue that law enforcement should be added as a "ghost" participant in all encrypted message conversations.

That would mean that intelligence agencies would be centered on encrypted messages, without users knowing they were present in a chat. The proponents argue that such a solution is no more invasive than the current practices of clandestine wiretapping in unencrypted telephone conversations.

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Responding to the open letter, one of the original authors of the proposal, Ian Levy of the National Center for Cyber ​​Security, said the proposal was "hypothetical" and was intended only "as a starting point for discussion." "We will continue to engage with stakeholders and hope to have an open discussion to reach the best possible solutions," Levy said in a statement to CNBC.

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