UK to Ban Encrypted Instant Messaging Apps?

WhatsApp is facing banning in the UK in the coming weeks. A story in the International Business Times that speculates instant messaging apps which enable encrypted communications (including Snapchat, Facebook Messenger and iMessage) could be banned in the UK under the so-called Snooper’s Charter now under consideration.

The extent of the powers that the government would claim under the legislation is not yet clear, but as the linked article says, it “would allow security services like the Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ, and MI5, or Military Intelligence Section 5, to access instant messages sent between people to and from the country,” and evidently “would give the government right to ban instant messaging apps that use end-to-end encryption.”

Details may be found at http://www.ibtimes.com.au/uks-snoopers-charter-ban-whatsapp-imessage-snapchat-1455452. (You may have to endure obnoxious advertising at that sie, however.)

3 thoughts on “UK to Ban Encrypted Instant Messaging Apps?

  1. Presumably the UK will disappear behind a Chinese style firewall to prevent us naughty Brits from accessing stuff the free world can access?

    Or will it never happen because our Prime Minister is functionally ignorant when it comes to the modern world?

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  2. Is WhatsApp an encrypted IM now? How can you tell? (Anyway, I moved to Threema, which uses NaCl.)

    BTW, wasn’t Orwell a Brit, too? :-S

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