Re: Brin on privacy

Eric Watt Forste (
Fri, 20 Dec 1996 10:49:25 -0800

Lyle Burkhead wrote:
>Let me rephrase my original statement: using more encryption than
>other people commonly use is like painting your windows black when
>everybody else uses curtains. It just attracts attention.

Why do you continue nattering about this topic as if you had never
heard of steganography?

I'm not going to look up the numbers and do the math for you (you're
such a math genius I'm sure you can handle that yourself), but if
you think the US federal government, or any government, has the
resources not only to scan for and identify all encrypted messages
in transit but also to single out the messages that are using
stronger than usual encryption, especially when you add in the
factor of steganography... well, actually, I know that you don't
think that. You're not *that* stupid. You're just up to your usual
tricks, sowing Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt whereever and whenever
you think it will turn the game to your advantage.

I know the NSA and other narc groups have black budgets, but the
black budgets are simply not large enough to do surveillance as
complete as you describe on as much bandwidth as they'd have to
monitor to create the illusory dangers you are depicting. Various
government bodies in the United States only eat about fifty percent
of the economy, and most of that is accounted for outside of the
black budgets. The kind of surveillance you describe would be so
expensive that it would leave a signal in the accounting books at
the macro level.

Try again, Herr FUD. Perhaps you can describe us some sectors of
the underground economy we've never heard of, and paint a pretty
picture about how these sectors are funding the narcs in their
nefarious schemes you'd like us to believe in.

Eric Watt Forste ++ ++