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India, Japan & Five Eyes Alliance demand access to end-to-end encrypted chats from tech companies

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India joins global call on tech companiesMembers of the Five Eyes Intelligence Alliance (United States of America, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.)  along with India, Japan have asked Big Tech Companies to find a solution for Law Enforcement Agencies to access end-to-end encrypted chats. The Countries highlighted that encryption has become a tool for terrorists and child traffickers, and poses risk to thousands of innocent lives.

India, Japan are not members of the Intelligence Alliance.

Key Points:

The 7 Governments have demanded a legal way to access encrypted chats as it blocks authorities from looking into serious crimes and matters like national security, Child Abuse. 

The Governments called for taking the following steps

i.It called for acting against illegal content and activity with no reduction to safety , and also to facilitate investigation of law enforcement agencies to safeguard the vulnerable

ii.Enabling the law enforcement agencies to access the contents in readable and usable format whenever it is necessary. However, the access can be subject to strong safeguards and oversight.

iii.To engage in consultation with governments and stakeholders to facilitate legal access

iv.The Governments also highlight that in 2018, Facebook Messenger was responsible for 12 million of 18.4 million worldwide reports of CSAM (Child Sexual Abuse Materials). 

End-to-end Encryption (E2EE):

i.End-to-end Encryption (E2EE) is a system of communication in which only the sender & receiver can read the message. The messages are encrypted which means that third parties cannot read the message.

ii.It provides users personal data protection, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.

Five Eyes (FVEY):

i.The members of the Intelligence alliance (United States of America, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand) are signatories to the multilateral UKUSA (United Kingdom-United States of America Agreement) .

ii.It is a treaty for joint cooperation in Signals Intelligence and was established after World War II to monitor private communications worldwide.