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Re: Setting the record straight: Zimmermann on PGP use in times of terrorism.
From: InfoSec News <isn () c4i org>
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2001 03:49:35 -0500 (CDT)
Forwarded from: Robert G. Ferrell <rferrell () texas net>
I told her that I felt bad about the possibility of terrorists
using PGP, but that I also felt that this was outweighed by the
fact that PGP was a tool for human rights around the world, which
was my original intent in developing it ten years ago.
The very idea of somehow blaming Phil Zimmerman for developing PGP
because it might have been used by the WTC terrorists is absolutely,
categorically, ludicrous. By that same logic, one must also implicate
the Wright brothers (et al.) for developing the aircraft, the inventor
of aviation fuel, the folks who built the WTC towers, and so on. PGP
is a tool. It can be used for good or ill, the same way a pipe wrench
can be used to stop a leak under your sink or break open someone's
The terrorists who planned this diabolical deed should be the sole
focus of our efforts, not a spurious witch hunt for someone more
accessible to blame. Phil Zimmerman's contributions to privacy and
the integrity of communications across the Internet have made him an
international icon, and for good reason. Kneejerk reactions such as
this only serve to distract us from our primary goal.
Phil, you have my profound thanks and admiration for developing PGP.
In my book you'll never be anything other than a hero.
Robert G. Ferrell
rferrell () texas net
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