Ambulance organizations are worried that the pending encryption of police radio transmissions in Lancaster County will compromise the safety of medics racing to dangerous calls, LNP reported last Wednesday. Emergency medical service leaders asked the county commissioners to revise their June approval of police radio encryption to allow their crews to listen to police calls. The commissioners have not made a decision on the request.
Encryption is a bad idea. Words like transparency and accountability should mean something. Their significance diminishes every time we erect another barrier between government and the public.
We want our police officers to be as safe as they can possibly be. We also believe in the importance of public access to information. These values are not mutually exclusive.
Practically speaking, theres no evidence that encrypting police transmissions will make policing safer or easier. Part of the rationale for encryption is to prevent an ambush or to keep the media from reaching a crime scene before law enforcement, which, by the way, is very rare.
We know police officers would rather not have to deal with media at a crime scene. But the media has a job to do. Weather events, fires, gas leaks the media monitors police transmissions to help keep the public informed. Thats the medias job. Weve asked for proof that media or public access to police transmissions has ever compromised a crime scene or an investigation, or violated the privacy of a victim. Were still waiting.
Weve also asked the county commissioners to reconsider. Now, were not alone.
As LNPs Jeff Hawkes reported, medics need to hear what the first officers on the scene are saying to each other and dispatchers about the nature of a crash, shooting or other emergency requiring an ambulance. They can start to prepare before they arrive if they have more information. Is the crime scene secure? Are flood waters too deep? Are there downed wires?
These are legitimate concerns and questions. And how were the EMS officials received when they spoke up at a meeting with the commissioners last week? Not well.
Police departments, I dont think, would ever come in here and ask you to put some regulation on the fire departments, said Chief Kevin McCarthy of East Earl Township, representing a county police chiefs group. We actually thought the matter was finished.
Its not. Nor should it be. And McCarthys comment misses the point by a wide margin.
The entities that rely on police transmissions should be working together to keep the public safe and informed. Radio transmissions help the media communicate to the public. EMTs use the information to get to people who need help. This is a debate about openness in government and access to information. Once it degenerates into an argument over stepping on toes or whos dictating policy to whom, were in real trouble.
As we wrote when the decision to encrypt was announced, if a lack of public trust and faith in government institutions is a real problem, this law only serves to exacerbate mistrust.
And now you have a group of first responders saying it makes no practical sense either and will make their jobs more difficult.
To lose that ability to communicate or at least monitor (police transmissions) is a real danger to people in EMS, Dr. Michael Reihart, the medical director of a regional emergency health services federation, told LNP.
This should be more than enough for the commissioners to reconsider.
It should be, but apparently, it isnt.
Commissioners Chairman Dennis Stuckey, after hearing from EMS officials, said that hes not inclined to change anything.
Darrell Fisher, president of the Lancaster County EMS Council, told LNP that he will continue to push this issue, and we commend him for doing so.
Its pretty clear that the commissioners and everyone else who favors encryption want Reihart and Fisher to lose interest and go away. We hope they dont.
Commissioner Craig Lehman may represent the last hope for preserving transparency and public accessibility. Lehman opposed blocking media access to police radio, and told LNP that hes sensitive to the medics request and worries about other unintended consequences of encryption that could put police at risk.
We hope the police who requested encryption and the commissioners who voted for it will reopen this discussion. We still believe a compromise can be reached. As LNP Executive Editor Barbara Hough Roda wrote in July, we seek a compromise that will allow law enforcement to do its work, and enable those of us in the news media to do ours.
That doesnt seem like too much to ask. And its the least the public has a right to expect.
- What Is Encryption? | Surveillance Self-Defense - December 4th, 2017
- Comodo Disk Encryption Download - softpedia.com - December 1st, 2017
- Encryption - Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - November 24th, 2017
- BitLocker Drive Encryption Overview - technet.microsoft.com - November 23rd, 2017
- The Encrypting File System - technet.microsoft.com - November 18th, 2017
- FBI cant break the encryption on Texas shooters smartphone - November 13th, 2017
- DOJ: Strong encryption that we dont have access to is ... - November 13th, 2017
- DOJ Fires Up New War With Apple Over Encryption - November 12th, 2017
- Security Awareness - Encryption | Office of Information ... - October 15th, 2017
- Data Encryption and Decryption (Windows) - October 14th, 2017
- Trumps DOJ tries to rebrand weakened encryption as responsible ... - October 11th, 2017
- How to encrypt (almost) anything | PCWorld - September 22nd, 2017
- Private Internet Access | VPN Encryption - September 21st, 2017
- Encryption Substitutes | Privacy | Encryption - September 21st, 2017
- Data Encryption: Hardware & Software Security: Online ... - September 21st, 2017
- How To Enable BitLocker Drive Encryption In Windows 10? - September 21st, 2017
- PGP Encryption Tool - iGolder - September 21st, 2017
- encryption - How to encrypt String in Java - Stack Overflow - September 21st, 2017
- Encryption Software Market, Size, Trends and Forecast 2020 - September 21st, 2017
- Encryption Definition - Tech Terms - September 20th, 2017
- Why You Should Be Encrypting Your Devices and How to Easily Do It - Gizmodo - September 6th, 2017
- Black Hats, White Hats, and Hard Hats The Need for Encryption in Mining and Resources - Australian Mining - September 6th, 2017
- How can enterprises secure encrypted traffic from cloud applications? - TechTarget - September 6th, 2017
- Encryption Explained - Arizona Daily Wildcat - September 6th, 2017
- News in brief: Call to link encryption to ID; Facebook maps everyone ... - Naked Security - September 2nd, 2017
- 'Independent' gov law reviewer wants users preemptively identified before they're 'allowed' to use encryption - The Register - September 2nd, 2017
- High-Dimensional Quantum Encryption Performed in Real-World ... - Futurism - September 2nd, 2017
- It's Time to Replace Your Encryption-Key Spreadsheet - Data Center Knowledge - September 2nd, 2017
- Legislation to limit smartphone encryption 'may be necessary,' deputy AG Rosenstein says - Washington Times - August 31st, 2017
- Cloud Encryption Market by Component, Service Model, Organization Size, Vertical And Region - Global Forecast to ... - Markets Insider - August 31st, 2017
- Cipher Suites: Ciphers, Algorithms and Negotiating Security Settings - Hashed Out by The SSL Store (registration) (blog) - August 31st, 2017
- Encryption in Office 365 - Office 365 - August 29th, 2017
- Need-to-Know Only: Use Encryption to Make Data Meaningless to ... - Security Intelligence (blog) - August 29th, 2017
- Four strategies to prevent data encryption from hijacking your network - Digital News Asia - August 29th, 2017
- Amber Rudd is wrong - real people do want end-to-end encryption - ITProPortal - August 29th, 2017
- Why encryption is for everyone - IFEX - August 29th, 2017
- 4D quantum encryption successful in first real-world test - New Atlas - New Atlas - August 29th, 2017
- For the First Time Ever, Quantum Communication is Demonstrated in Real-World City Conditions - Futurism - August 26th, 2017
- High-Dimensional Quantum Encryption Takes Place in Real-World ... - Photonics.com - August 26th, 2017
- Hedvig Bakes Encryption into Software-Defined Storage Platform - IT Business Edge (blog) - August 26th, 2017
- Hedvig storage upgrade adds flash tier, encryption options - TechTarget - August 26th, 2017
- How to use EFS encryption to encrypt individual files and folders on Windows 10 - Windows Central - August 26th, 2017
- Cloud Encryption Market Worth 2401.9 Million USD by 2022 - Markets Insider - August 23rd, 2017
- To Protect Genetic Privacy, Encrypt Your DNA - WIRED - August 23rd, 2017
- Data Encryption in OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online - August 21st, 2017
- Researchers use encryption to keep patients' DNA private - Engadget - August 21st, 2017
- iPhone Secure Enclave firmware encryption key leaked - TechTarget - August 21st, 2017
- Encryption, speed push the modern mainframe into the future - TechTarget - August 21st, 2017
- Hardware encryption vs software encryption: the simple guide - Kroll Ontrack UK (press release) (blog) - August 21st, 2017
- Encryption Technology Could Protect the Privacy of Your DNA - Gizmodo - August 21st, 2017
- Beginner's guide to Windows 10 encryption - Windows Central - August 18th, 2017
- Encryption key for iPhone 5s Touch ID exposed, opens door to further research - AppleInsider (press release) (blog) - August 18th, 2017
- How security pros look at encryption backdoors - Help Net Security - August 18th, 2017
- The Laws of Mathematics and the Laws of Nations: The Encryption Debate Revisited - Lawfare (blog) - August 18th, 2017
- 72 percent of security pros say encryption backdoors won't stop terrorism - BetaNews - August 18th, 2017
- Ex-MI5 Boss Evans: Don't Undermine Encryption - Infosecurity Magazine - August 14th, 2017
- Despite end to end encryption, apps like WhatsApp, Messenger are still vulnerable to hacking: Study - Firstpost - August 13th, 2017
- What is Encryption? (with pictures) - wiseGEEK - August 12th, 2017
- Ex-MI5 chief warns against crackdown on encrypted messaging ... - The Guardian - August 12th, 2017
- Former UK security service head says weakening encryption would be too dangerous - 9to5Mac - August 12th, 2017
- News in brief: facial recognition planned for Carnival; spy chief backs encryption; ginger emoji planned - Naked Security - August 12th, 2017
- Avoid getting lost in encryption with these easy steps - We Live Security (blog) - August 12th, 2017
- Here's why IBM Z Mainframe Wants to Encrypt the World - Edgy Labs (blog) - August 10th, 2017
- Symantec Announces Plesk Will Integrate Symantec Encryption Everywhere Security Into Its Website Management ... - Business Wire (press release) - August 10th, 2017
- Australia: Shelve Proposed Law to Weaken Encryption - Human Rights Watch (press release) - August 6th, 2017
- IBM India Helps Create Breakthrough Encryption Technology That's Completely Hacker Proof - Indiatimes.com - August 6th, 2017
- Letter to Prime Minister Turnbull re Encryption and Human Rights - Human Rights Watch (press release) - August 5th, 2017
- Zscaler Finds Hackers Using SSL Encryption in Malware to Hide ... - eWeek - August 5th, 2017
- HBO Hack Highlights Importance of Encryption, Data Governance - eSecurity Planet - August 3rd, 2017
- UK flip-flop on encryption doesn't help anyone - CNET - August 3rd, 2017
- UpVote: Turkish regime jails IT trainers in encryption clampdown - Ars Technica UK - August 3rd, 2017
- Telegram messaging app strikes deal with Indonesia on encryption - Digital Trends - August 2nd, 2017
- Encryption is for 'Real People' - Human Rights Watch - August 2nd, 2017
- We don't want to ban encryption, but our inability to see what terrorists are plotting undermines our security - Telegraph.co.uk - August 2nd, 2017
- Real people don't need encryption - Fudzilla - August 2nd, 2017
- Ex-NSA boss questions encrypted message access laws proposed by Malcolm Turnbull - ABC Online - August 2nd, 2017
- Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg: WhatsApp metadata informs governments about terrorist activity in spite of encryption - CNBC - July 31st, 2017
- Commissioners need to rethink encryption - LancasterOnline - July 31st, 2017
- Ex-NSA chief Chris Inglis backs government's encryption push against Apple, Facebook - The Australian Financial Review - July 31st, 2017
- Oak Ridge licenses its quantum encryption method - FCW.com - July 31st, 2017