While Google and Apple’s networks have been completely infiltrated by the NSA and others, they appear to be fighting back, at least a little bit.
With its new iOS 8 software, Apple is locking itself out of users’ smartphones — and leaving cops and the courts out in the cold. The Cupertino-based company announced last week that photos, email, contacts and other information will now be encrypted with users’ passcodes, meaning “it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data” from the phone. Google followed suit the next day, saying that the forthcoming version of its Android software will offer the same protections. — Mercury News
Thoughts, feelings and conversations stored in our brain are encrypted. No one can access them without our continued consent. Even if a law enforcement official has a warrant to question you, the key to decrypting the thoughts/information stored in your head has to come from you, either willingly, through wily interrogation, or through coercion. A police officer cannot attach a usb cable to your head and download all the data in an effort to sift for useful information. We hold many private thoughts in our head, whether they are secret crushes, naked pictures, amazing fantasies, mean thoughts about a friend, laws we have broken in secret, and so much more. No one’s constantly surveilling our brains, filing our “bad” thoughts away for future use or constantly busting us for thought crimes. I am happy our brains are private.
Our handheld computers are an extension of our brains, they store information we have no room for, they help us hold “private” thoughts as notes or pictures, and help us broadcast them to the world if we deem them not private. Encryption that cannot be broken without continued consent (only yes means yes!) is critical to our ability to use smartphones and other artificial intelligences going forward without constant fear of surveillance.
I am happy our brains are private.
We have a choice going forward, let artificial intelligence help us grow, or limit the use to innocuous thoughts because we are not allowed to keep them private and encrypted. Don’t let people argue the distinctions between our brains and brain accessories away by having different privacy standards for the two.1