[guardian-dev] Judge: Americans can be forced to decrypt their laptops

Hans-Christoph Steiner hans at guardianproject.info
Wed Jan 25 13:19:30 EST 2012

Seems that the US courts are trying to equate encryption passphrases with things like getting fingerprinted, giving a blood sample, or a voice sample, i.e. things that are not protected by the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination:


"Judge Robert Blackburn ordered a Peyton, Colo., woman to decrypt the hard drive of a Toshiba laptop computer no later than February 21--or face the consequences including contempt of court.

Blackburn, a George W. Bush appointee, ruled that the Fifth Amendment posed no barrier to his decryption order. The Fifth Amendment says that nobody may be "compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself," which has become known as the right to avoid self-incrimination."


More information about the Guardian-dev mailing list