Re: Secure Data Act. Your thoughts on the chances of its passing and implications
We should go get coffee one day.
I think that this bill is Constitutionally unnecessary, and likely to fail after passing the Legislature given the climate and veto powers of of the Executive Branch leadership. I also think that it will be an unfortunate waste of effort by the government to continue to pursue backdoor access.
The Constitution has come under some intense fire in the last few years. In the name of security and what appears to be a waning lack of personal responsibility, the call to shred the Bill of Rights has climbed higher and higher.
The free access to and protection of encryption algorithms and computer source code under the First Amendment was already addressed by the court in 1996 (https://www.eff.org/press/archives/2008/04/21-37). Therefore requiring software authors to write in a backdoor would be prior restraint upon those authors and programmers. Since a consumer could simply purchase a non-US product or acquire a non-commercial product, the net effect is only the prior restraint of free speech against US based manufacturers of security software.
Under the Fourth Amendment protections the government lacks any default right to my documents and effects and therefore has no claim on which to base a preemptive and presumptuous weakening of the security that I employ.
That's my personal analysis. I would love to hear counterpoints and other opinions.