This week, Andy Greenberg and Gwern Branwen uncovered the probable identity of Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto—but then again, he might be a hoaxer. We took a look at malvertising, the hack that can infect your computer even if you don’t click anything. And Anonymous announced it’s launching an online operation against national embarrassment/presidential candidate Donald Trump. TheTor Project got a new executive director, who knows a thing or two about defending digital privacy. And meanwhile, the war against encryption raged on.
Each Saturday we round up the news stories that we didn’t break or cover in depth at WIRED, but which deserve your attention nonetheless. As always, click on the headlines to read the full story in each link posted. And stay safe out there!
Cryptographers, civil libertarians, and privacy advocates have spoken loud and clear about how weakening encryption will make online communications and e-commerce more vulnerable (and make tech companies less competitive economically). But the war against crypto rages on in the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino. President Obama is calling on tech companies to work with law enforcement in the case of “activist terrorist plotting,” and he’s hinting at a push to weaken encryption. Senator Dianne Feinstein has been working with Judiciary Committee Chairman Richard Burr on a bill that could undermine strong encryption, and FBI director James Comey called for tech companies offering end-to-end encryption to reconsider their business model. Homeland Security House Committee chair Mike McCaul called for the creation of a commission to address security and technology challenges. He plans to introduce a bill calling for the creation of this commission in January, a House Committee on Homeland Security spokesperson told Motherboard. The Obama administration responded to a We the People petition asking the administration to stand up for strong encryption by seeking further comment, and has indicated that it plans to formally respond by the holidays.