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Old 01-24-2012, 11:34 AM
 
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So much for the Fifth Amendment.....

Quote:
American citizens can be ordered to decrypt their PGP-scrambled hard drives for police to peruse for incriminating files, a federal judge in Colorado ruled today in what could become a precedent-setting case.
Judge: Americans can be forced to decrypt their laptops | Privacy Inc. - CNET News
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Old 01-24-2012, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plwhit View Post
I don't think this is so cut and dry. An encrypted hard drive is analagous to a locked safe or safety deposit box. Existing law allows law enforcement, with a proper warrant, to search those sealed devices.

I think in the cited case there are some doubts about the quality of the warrant. But if the warrant is legally valid unlocking the hard drive seems reasonable to me.
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Old 01-24-2012, 02:09 PM
 
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Yeah. Hey, I'm the biggest libertarian there is but, as long as there is a warrant, I don't see the big deal.
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Old 01-24-2012, 02:22 PM
 
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Default What about the 5th amendement?

The Fifth Amendment protects witnesses from being forced to incriminate themselves. To "plead the Fifth" is to refuse to answer a question because the response could provide self-incriminating evidence of an illegal act punishable by fines, penalties or forfeiture.

Seems very counter to this ^^^^
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Old 01-24-2012, 02:27 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville Native View Post
The Fifth Amendment protects witnesses from being forced to incriminate themselves. To "plead the Fifth" is to refuse to answer a question because the response could provide self-incriminating evidence of an illegal act punishable by fines, penalties or forfeiture.

Seems very counter to this ^^^^
But if you had a safe, and law enforcement had a reason to believe you had important evidence in it - they can make you open it whether it will incriminate you or not. I have no problem with the idea that "giving up the key" is not the same as answering a question that will incriminate you. In this case the encryption key is literally the key.
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Old 01-24-2012, 02:47 PM
 
Location: WV and Eastport, ME
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoffdano View Post
But if you had a safe, and law enforcement had a reason to believe you had important evidence in it - they can make you open it whether it will incriminate you or not. I have no problem with the idea that "giving up the key" is not the same as answering a question that will incriminate you. In this case the encryption key is literally the key.
That sounds simple enough. You may feel different when there is a detective standing there doing something you feel threatens your constitutional liberties. We just learned a few days ago that cops can't plant a GPS on your car without a warrant.
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Old 01-24-2012, 02:52 PM
 
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They can't ask you for the key if they don't know about the encrypted volume. If you're trying to hide something, use hidden volumes.

A lot of SSDs have a kill switch. The Intel 320 series for example. You can flush the keys and all your data is gone forever (well, until quantum computing becomes a reality).
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Old 01-24-2012, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Ohio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plwhit View Post
So much for the Fifth Amendment.....
This is not a 5th Amendment issue, unless you're claiming you mind-melded with the hard-drive.

Live long and prosper....

Mircea

Quote:
Originally Posted by mensaguy View Post
That sounds simple enough. You may feel different when there is a detective standing there doing something you feel threatens your constitutional liberties. We just learned a few days ago that cops can't plant a GPS on your car without a warrant.
Well, from the point of view of the least rational person, law enforcement can never take any action ever, since anything they would ever do would always be unconstitutional.

Searching your laptop/computer with a warrant has nothing to do with secretly attaching a device to your vehicle to monitor your movements.

Constitutionally...


Mircea
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Old 01-24-2012, 03:27 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBest View Post
They can't ask you for the key if they don't know about the encrypted volume. If you're trying to hide something, use hidden volumes.

A lot of SSDs have a kill switch. The Intel 320 series for example. You can flush the keys and all your data is gone forever (well, until quantum computing becomes a reality).
Because I don't know otherwise - I assume law enforcement in this case has good reason to believe the encrypted drive contains data relevant to the case. Hence they took possession of it. Law enforcement routinely takes possession of computers during a criminal investigation. The suspect in question is a suspect because of other evidence, right? So the hard drive is just another device that contains relevant data.

If LE just wants to fish through the drive without any idea what is stored on it - I have some doubts about the validity of a search warrant in this case.
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Old 01-24-2012, 03:35 PM
 
24,503 posts, read 35,968,627 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoffdano View Post
Because I don't know otherwise - I assume law enforcement in this case has good reason to believe the encrypted drive contains data relevant to the case. Hence they took possession of it. Law enforcement routinely takes possession of computers during a criminal investigation. The suspect in question is a suspect because of other evidence, right? So the hard drive is just another device that contains relevant data.

If LE just wants to fish through the drive without any idea what is stored on it - I have some doubts about the validity of a search warrant in this case.
What I was trying to say was that law enforcement can only ask for an encryption key if for encrypted volumes in which they are aware of. If there is a hidden encrypted volume, law enforcement will not know it exists, thus they cannot request a key for it.
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