"A lot of what we're talking about tonight isn't 'Here's how to make yourself totally secure and defeat the NSA, and you'll never get spied on.' It's about 'If you do these things, and if we all do these things, [surveillance will] become more expensive, and more hassle'," said Tom Sulston over a cup of tea late Friday afternoon.
Some of the technology industry's largest companies have applied pressure on President Obama over the issue of data encryption.
Random numbers in cryptography are key (pun intended). They can be a weak point in a crypto system and, consequently, are frequently the target of attack. So I've been trying to get my head around the subject of randomness.
The Obama administration hopes Silicon Valley technologists can think of a system with strong encryption that could be pierced legally by one party without opening the door to others, a White House official said.
White House cybersecurity policy coordinator Michael Daniel said at the annual RSA Conference on security that he is trying to set starting principles for a broad public discussion on the issue, which has been a major source of tension with technology companies and other cyber experts.
Use of encryption to protect business data continues to increase, but managing the technology involved continues to be a headache.
Just over a third (36 percent) of organisations said they now have an enterprise-wide encryption strategy in place, a number that has been steadily rising from the 15 percent reported a decade ago, according to a survey.