13 NOVEMBER 2020

SUPPORTING CALLS FOR ONLINE PLATFORMS TO BE SECURE AS FIGHT AGAINST CRIME SHIFTS FROM STREETS TO CYBER-SPACE

BY JOHN PARKINSON

The world is moving more rapidly into online communications, but this cannot be a hiding place for criminals. In some respects, the fight against crime is shifting from the streets to cyber-space.

 

For the past two years the Five Eyes alliance, comprising the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, has been calling on tech companies to find a solution for law enforcement agencies to be able to access encrypted communications.

 

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) means communications, whether they be video, calls, messages or files, can only be seen, heard or read by the people directly communicating with each other and not by potential eavesdroppers.

 

In October 2020 the Five Eyes alliance was joined by government representatives for Japan and India in publishing a statement which argued that the way E2EE is supported on some of the major tech platforms could stop law enforcement from being able to investigate crime rings.

 

The signatories argue that “particular implementations of encryption technology” are posing challenges to law enforcement investigations and that some of the tech platforms cannot access certain communications and so are unable to provide data needed by investigators.

 

This, officials argue, creates a safe haven for criminal activity and puts the safety of “highly vulnerable members of our societies like sexually exploited children” in danger.

 

We get that argument and we fully support preventing criminals from being able to carry out their activities using tech platforms.

 

Mercury, our secure communications platform, was designed following advice from former senior FBI agents and law enforcement chiefs from the US and the UK. Our number one priority? Under no circumstances can we allow Mercury to be used by those with criminal or terrorist intent. We do this by not allowing them access to it in the first place.

 

Unlike some other popular tech platforms, we only allow trusted professionals and companies to use our platform and they must first go through a strict vetting process. It is not available for members of the general public to download.

 

If technology companies were required to leave a backdoor open for law enforcement, then it could also be vulnerable to access by criminals, thus undermining the point of true E2EE. The best way to balance providing E2EE with effective law enforcement is to ensure the tech providers have security at the heart of its operations and do everything within their power to prevent their platforms from being used by criminals in the first place.

 

As things currently stand, if a law enforcement agency needs to access data that a tech company holds, then it can apply for an order for the data to be released. Similar provisions exist across the Five Eyes Alliance. Many platforms do hold substantial amounts of data which can include information like where calls/messages were made; who the sender and recipient was; how long the call lasted for; and which device(s) were used to make the call. This customer information is often used internally for marketing, research and development purposes but can be useful to law enforcement, even if the actual content is not available. To access content of communications would require tech companies to hold encryption keys and store the transmission data.

 

At Secured Communications we do not harvest any data about communications. We do not hold encryption keys. This is because our users’ privacy is paramount to us. Our customers are business leaders and professional people who need to use our system in confidence, with confidence that their company information will be secure and private when they, or their employees, are discussing work matters online.

 

They need to be sure that no-one can listen in on their conversations or see their data. Because that kind of legitimate information can be very useful to competitors, criminals or some other nefarious entity, and potentially be very commercially damaging. Their privacy must be protected.

 

The fact that the Five Eyes alliance, Japan and India is calling for law enforcement to be able to investigate online criminals comes as no surprise to us and we want them to be able to do that, but the answer is NOT to require all tech companies to make their E2EE data more accessible, as that would simply disable the confidence legitimate companies need in protecting their data.

 

Let us remind you that Mercury was built on the expertise of former senior police officers and  FBI agents, and we have already built in the safeguards through our strict vetting process.

 

With all of this in mind, we are proud to be able to say that we are a global tech company that gives TRUE end-2-end encryption and still protects against any criminal use even though we don’t hold any encryption keys and we never harvest any data.

 

We can do this, because we’ve done our due diligence on our users in the first place.

 

We don’t let just anyone in.

 

John Parkinson OBE is a former Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police and Senior National Counter Terrorism Coordinator. He is president of US tech company, Secured Communications, which recently launched its Mercury secure video conferencing, audio calling, messaging and file transfer platform in the UK.

 

Glossary:

 

E2EE – End to end encryption (a random string of bits which are created for scrambling and unscrambling data)

Transmission Data - the transfer of digital or analogue data over a communication to one or more devices

SAN FRANCISCO | RENO TAHOE  | SYDNEY | LONDON

©2021 SECURED COMMUNICATIONS

  •  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Sustainability

EULA

SLA

SAN FRANCISCO | RENO TAHOE  | SYDNEY | LONDON

©2021 SECURED COMMUNICATIONS

  •  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

13 NOVEMBER 2020

SUPPORTING CALLS FOR ONLINE PLATFORMS TO BE SECURE AS FIGHT AGAINST CRIME SHIFTS FROM STREETS TO CYBER-SPACE

BY JOHN PARKINSON

The world is moving more rapidly into online communications, but this cannot be a hiding place for criminals. In some respects, the fight against crime is shifting from the streets to cyber-space.

 

For the past two years the Five Eyes alliance, comprising the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, has been calling on tech companies to find a solution for law enforcement agencies to be able to access encrypted communications.

 

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) means communications, whether they be video, calls, messages or files, can only be seen, heard or read by the people directly communicating with each other and not by potential eavesdroppers.

 

In October 2020 the Five Eyes alliance was joined by government representatives for Japan and India in publishing a statement which argued that the way E2EE is supported on some of the major tech platforms could stop law enforcement from being able to investigate crime rings.

 

The signatories argue that “particular implementations of encryption technology” are posing challenges to law enforcement investigations and that some of the tech platforms cannot access certain communications and so are unable to provide data needed by investigators.

 

This, officials argue, creates a safe haven for criminal activity and puts the safety of “highly vulnerable members of our societies like sexually exploited children” in danger.

 

We get that argument and we fully support preventing criminals from being able to carry out their activities using tech platforms.

 

Mercury, our secure communications platform, was designed following advice from former senior FBI agents and law enforcement chiefs from the US and the UK. Our number one priority? Under no circumstances can we allow Mercury to be used by those with criminal or terrorist intent. We do this by not allowing them access to it in the first place.

 

Unlike some other popular tech platforms, we only allow trusted professionals and companies to use our platform and they must first go through a strict vetting process. It is not available for members of the general public to download.

 

If technology companies were required to leave a backdoor open for law enforcement, then it could also be vulnerable to access by criminals, thus undermining the point of true E2EE. The best way to balance providing E2EE with effective law enforcement is to ensure the tech providers have security at the heart of its operations and do everything within their power to prevent their platforms from being used by criminals in the first place.

 

As things currently stand, if a law enforcement agency needs to access data that a tech company holds, then it can apply for an order for the data to be released. Similar provisions exist across the Five Eyes Alliance. Many platforms do hold substantial amounts of data which can include information like where calls/messages were made; who the sender and recipient was; how long the call lasted for; and which device(s) were used to make the call. This customer information is often used internally for marketing, research and development purposes but can be useful to law enforcement, even if the actual content is not available. To access content of communications would require tech companies to hold encryption keys and store the transmission data.

 

At Secured Communications we do not harvest any data about communications. We do not hold encryption keys. This is because our users’ privacy is paramount to us. Our customers are business leaders and professional people who need to use our system in confidence, with confidence that their company information will be secure and private when they, or their employees, are discussing work matters online.

 

They need to be sure that no-one can listen in on their conversations or see their data. Because that kind of legitimate information can be very useful to competitors, criminals or some other nefarious entity, and potentially be very commercially damaging. Their privacy must be protected.

 

The fact that the Five Eyes alliance, Japan and India is calling for law enforcement to be able to investigate online criminals comes as no surprise to us and we want them to be able to do that, but the answer is NOT to require all tech companies to make their E2EE data more accessible, as that would simply disable the confidence legitimate companies need in protecting their data.

 

Let us remind you that Mercury was built on the expertise of former senior police officers and  FBI agents, and we have already built in the safeguards through our strict vetting process.

 

With all of this in mind, we are proud to be able to say that we are a global tech company that gives TRUE end-2-end encryption and still protects against any criminal use even though we don’t hold any encryption keys and we never harvest any data.

 

We can do this, because we’ve done our due diligence on our users in the first place.

 

We don’t let just anyone in.

 

John Parkinson OBE is a former Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police and Senior National Counter Terrorism Coordinator. He is president of US tech company, Secured Communications, which recently launched its Mercury secure video conferencing, audio calling, messaging and file transfer platform in the UK.

 

Glossary:

 

E2EE – End to end encryption (a random string of bits which are created for scrambling and unscrambling data)

Transmission Data - the transfer of digital or analogue data over a communication to one or more devices

SAN FRANCISCO | RENO TAHOE  | SYDNEY | LONDON

©2021 SECURED COMMUNICATIONS

  •  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

13 NOVEMBER 2020

SUPPORTING CALLS FOR ONLINE PLATFORMS TO BE SECURE AS FIGHT AGAINST CRIME SHIFTS FROM STREETS TO CYBER-SPACE

BY JOHN PARKINSON

The world is moving more rapidly into online communications, but this cannot be a hiding place for criminals. In some respects, the fight against crime is shifting from the streets to cyber-space.

 

For the past two years the Five Eyes alliance, comprising the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, has been calling on tech companies to find a solution for law enforcement agencies to be able to access encrypted communications.

 

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) means communications, whether they be video, calls, messages or files, can only be seen, heard or read by the people directly communicating with each other and not by potential eavesdroppers.

 

In October 2020 the Five Eyes alliance was joined by government representatives for Japan and India in publishing a statement which argued that the way E2EE is supported on some of the major tech platforms could stop law enforcement from being able to investigate crime rings.

 

The signatories argue that “particular implementations of encryption technology” are posing challenges to law enforcement investigations and that some of the tech platforms cannot access certain communications and so are unable to provide data needed by investigators.

 

This, officials argue, creates a safe haven for criminal activity and puts the safety of “highly vulnerable members of our societies like sexually exploited children” in danger.

 

We get that argument and we fully support preventing criminals from being able to carry out their activities using tech platforms.

 

Mercury, our secure communications platform, was designed following advice from former senior FBI agents and law enforcement chiefs from the US and the UK. Our number one priority? Under no circumstances can we allow Mercury to be used by those with criminal or terrorist intent. We do this by not allowing them access to it in the first place.

 

Unlike some other popular tech platforms, we only allow trusted professionals and companies to use our platform and they must first go through a strict vetting process. It is not available for members of the general public to download.

 

If technology companies were required to leave a backdoor open for law enforcement, then it could also be vulnerable to access by criminals, thus undermining the point of true E2EE. The best way to balance providing E2EE with effective law enforcement is to ensure the tech providers have security at the heart of its operations and do everything within their power to prevent their platforms from being used by criminals in the first place.

 

As things currently stand, if a law enforcement agency needs to access data that a tech company holds, then it can apply for an order for the data to be released. Similar provisions exist across the Five Eyes Alliance. Many platforms do hold substantial amounts of data which can include information like where calls/messages were made; who the sender and recipient was; how long the call lasted for; and which device(s) were used to make the call. This customer information is often used internally for marketing, research and development purposes but can be useful to law enforcement, even if the actual content is not available. To access content of communications would require tech companies to hold encryption keys and store the transmission data.

 

At Secured Communications we do not harvest any data about communications. We do not hold encryption keys. This is because our users’ privacy is paramount to us. Our customers are business leaders and professional people who need to use our system in confidence, with confidence that their company information will be secure and private when they, or their employees, are discussing work matters online.

 

They need to be sure that no-one can listen in on their conversations or see their data. Because that kind of legitimate information can be very useful to competitors, criminals or some other nefarious entity, and potentially be very commercially damaging. Their privacy must be protected.

 

The fact that the Five Eyes alliance, Japan and India is calling for law enforcement to be able to investigate online criminals comes as no surprise to us and we want them to be able to do that, but the answer is NOT to require all tech companies to make their E2EE data more accessible, as that would simply disable the confidence legitimate companies need in protecting their data.

 

Let us remind you that Mercury was built on the expertise of former senior police officers and  FBI agents, and we have already built in the safeguards through our strict vetting process.

 

With all of this in mind, we are proud to be able to say that we are a global tech company that gives TRUE end-2-end encryption and still protects against any criminal use even though we don’t hold any encryption keys and we never harvest any data.

 

We can do this, because we’ve done our due diligence on our users in the first place.

 

We don’t let just anyone in.

 

John Parkinson OBE is a former Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police and Senior National Counter Terrorism Coordinator. He is president of US tech company, Secured Communications, which recently launched its Mercury secure video conferencing, audio calling, messaging and file transfer platform in the UK.

 

Glossary:

 

E2EE – End to end encryption (a random string of bits which are created for scrambling and unscrambling data)

Transmission Data - the transfer of digital or analogue data over a communication to one or more devices

 

SAN FRANCISCO | RENO TAHOE  | SYDNEY | LONDON

©2021 SECURED COMMUNICATIONS

  •  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Sustainability

EULA

SLA