Expedited Access to Strongly Encrypted Devices (EASED)

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The fictional promotional material presented above has been taken from a proposed solution to the problem of governmental access to encrypted devices. This material was created to illustrate how such a solution could potentially be promoted to national governments. It also describes, in simplified terms, how that solution could operate.

The proposal describes, at a high level, and in the broadest of terms, a pragmatic approach to facilitate ‘limited-governmental access to encrypted devices’. A key objective of this proposal was to make such access possible but not cheap or easy. This proposal is not an implementation-ready design, and only addresses the extraction of data-at-rest from an encrypted device, and not the extraction of data-in-motion from an encrypted communications channel. It is hoped that this proposal will catalyze global discussions on the subject and eventually lead to a practical solution that is acceptable to all interested parties.

The creation of the solution described in this proposal does not require the permission or support of any government, as it is intended that it will be created by the ‘global technology community’. The solution will then be offered on an as-is, take-it-or-leave-it basis, to national governments by a fully-independent non-governmental organization, which will ensure that the solution is only used in the most exceptional of circumstances (i.e., to prevent or investigate the most serious crimes or acts of terror).

Device manufacturers that implement support for the proposed solution within their devices will never become directly involved in its use. The limit of their involvement will be in adding the solution’s necessary hardware and software to their devices, and no more. The operation of the solution is out of their control. It is also out of the control of government. The solution is intended to be a service to government, not a service of government.

  • The proposal can be found here.
  • Background to the proposal can be found here.

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