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Judge Orders Woman to Decrypt Her Laptop

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tjadams View Drop Down
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  Quote tjadams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Judge Orders Woman to Decrypt Her Laptop
    Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 08:29

Judge reportedly orders Colorado woman to decrypt laptop

Published January 24, 2012

| FoxNews.com

A judge has reportedly ordered a Colorado woman to decrypt her laptop computer so prosecutors may use the files against her in a criminal case involving alleged bank fraud.

The defendant, Ramona Fricosu, had unsuccessfully argued that being forced to do so would violate the Fifth Amendment protection against compelled self-incrimination, Wired reports.

“I conclude that the Fifth Amendment is not implicated by requiring production of the unencrypted contents of the Toshiba Satellite M305 laptop computer,” Colorado U.S. District Judge Robert Blackburn ruled Monday.


Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/01/24/judge-reportedly-orders-colorado-woman-to-decrypt-laptop/?test=latestnews#ixzz1kTaeJVJ7

I can totally understand the sticky mess this is, she is indeed incriminating herself. But, why cannot the 
judge get someone to hack it open?


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  Quote medenaywe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 08:45
It is interesting law case!She could have told him i forgot the key encryption code also!
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  Quote Cryptic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 08:53

Originally posted by tjadams

I can totally understand the sticky mess this is, she is indeed incriminating herself.

I dont think that argument is going to work.   They probably have a search warrant for the computer and her refusal is similar to: "Yes, I see your search warrant, but I am not going to open my home safe because the files in there might incriminate me."

 
Originally posted by tjadams

 But, why cannot the 

judge get someone to hack it open?
That is because the ecryption is probably pretty sophisticated.  The super computers and linguistics, logic experts of NSA only de crypt these things in cases that involve national security or have very extenuating circumstances (a past  "impossible" decryption involved a child murderer).
 
Originally posted by medenaywe

It is interesting law case!She could have told him i forgot the key encryption code also!
Technically, that would not matter if the government really wants to read those files. Though the code writers boast that their ciphers can't be broken,  the ciphers can be broken  if the government really, really wants to.  They just don't really, really want to very often and then, they don't advertise it.


Edited by Cryptic - 25-Jan-2012 at 10:11
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  Quote Centrix Vigilis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 09:43
She can continue to defy the order suffer the consequences under a different statute ie. contempt of court and I wouldn't be surprised if she does.
 
Blackburn ordered Fricosu to surrender an unencrypted hard drive by Feb. 21. The judge added that the government is precluded “from using Ms. Fricosu act of production of the unencrypted hard drive against her in any prosecution," Wired reports

 

that's an almost ambiguity of terms in no prosecution for the surrendering but possible for the data....hmmm.

 

One wonders if she gets a contempt cite if she drives three or four nails into the hd and then immerses it in vinegar for two days.....Wink



Edited by Centrix Vigilis - 25-Jan-2012 at 09:43
"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"

S. T. Friedman


Pilger's law: 'If it's been officially denied, then it's probably true'

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  Quote TheAlaniDragonRising Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 09:45
What a problem for the woman,and the judge, if she's guilty then maybe she could have been right about incriminating evidence, but if she is innocent then the judge is right to tell her to decrypt. Although if she is innocent then the woman would be wrong to claim about incriminating evidence........Wink
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  Quote unclefred Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 11:12
She could pull a Bill Clinton and tie up the courts with her court appointed attorney and pose a legal argument over the meaning of 'dercrypt'. Surely that could take as long as arguing over the word 'is'.
 
 
 
 
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  Quote TheAlaniDragonRising Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 11:26
I think I would say that if there was evidence that this woman was involved in the fraud she is being charged over, then there is due reason to allow decryption to be asked for, but if there isn't the evidence prior to asking for the decryption, then maybe the authorities are stepping onto the toes of civil liberties.
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  Quote tjadams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Jan-2012 at 19:05
I wonder what program she's using to encrypt that the local police can't break?
They have teams of data experts on staff I'm sure and perhaps if she's using a 
name brand program, they can see what it is, contact the company and perhaps
get a small window into decrypting it themselves.  I hope we can find out how
this story ends.
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