Professor Outlines The Risks Around Backdoors in Cryptography at Edinburgh International Science Festival


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On 4 April 2017, Prof Bill Buchanan presented his viewpoints on the usage of surveillance and in the application of backdoors in cryptography. The event was hosted within Summerhall in Edinburgh, and was part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival.

The debate focused on Borders, Benefits and Biomedicine: Surveillance and Social Justice, and included the Chairman of the CCBE Working Party on Surveillance Iain Mitchell QC and Dr Eric Stoddart, Associate Director of the Centre for the Study of Religion and Politics at St Andrews University, to explore the issues.

Prof Buchanan outlined that the usage of backdoors in cryptography would open-up too many risks from malicious entities.

In conclusion the panel outlined that while there were great risks within an online environment, there are also great opportunities to use Big Data infrastructures to detect those who are in most need.

Abstract: Everyday life is already saturated with surveillance technologies, but some argue that the response to social issues lies in more and better surveillance. How is digital surveillance impacting upon issues of social justice and how can our thinking take us beyond narrower questions around privacy?

Professor Bill Buchanan's next event at the Edinburgh International Science Festival is at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, where he will outline some of the methods that scammers use to trick people [here], and outline a bit of science, with the help of Bob and Alice, along the way.

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Associated people

William Buchanan
Director of CDCS
+44 131 455 2759
Electronic information now plays a vital role in almost every aspect of our daily lives. So the need for a secure and trustworthy online infrastructure is more important than ever. without it, not only the growth of the internet but our personal interactions and the economy itself could be at risk.