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EFFector - Volume 10, Issue 7 - Send a Digital Postcard to Sen. McCain Opposing Anti-Crypto Bill


EFFector - Volume 10, Issue 7 - Send a Digital Postcard to Sen. McCain Opposing Anti-Crypto Bill

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EFFector        Vol. 10, No. 07       July 9, 1997
A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation        ISSN 1062-9424


 Send a Digital Postcard to Sen. McCain Opposing Anti-Crypto Bill
 [Upcoming Events skipped for this issue - no change from last issue]
 Quote of the Day
 What YOU Can Do

 * See for more information
   on current EFF activities and online activism alerts! *


Subject: Send a Digital Postcard to Sen. McCain Opposing Anti-Crypto Bill


1) Visit and send an e-postcard to Sen.
McCain (and Adopt Your Legislator).

2) Grab a copy of the "Don't Make Me Hand Over My Privacy Keys" buttons
from the EFF web page at, post it on your own site, and
link it to

3) If you like, check out the audio files of the radio spot EFF produced,
now airing in DC, San Francisco, and several other major metropolitan
areas. You can even put these sounds on your web site if you like. The
sound files are at

* Background

On July 1, Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Bob Kerrey (D-NE)  introduced
the Secure Public Networks Act (S.909) - a bill which would for the first
time impose domestic restrictions on the ability of American citizens to
use encryption technologies to protect their privacy and security inside
the United States. This bill was approved by the Senate Commerce Committee
over the objections of Senator Conrad Burns (R-MT), principal sponsor of
the Promotion of Commerce Online in the Digital Era Act (Pro-CODE) and 8
other senators.  The McCain-Kerrey bill is now before the Senate Judiciary

The legislation, which is also co-sponsored by Sen. Ernest Hollings
(D-SC), would force the U.S. domestic market for encryption to adopt
untested and vulnerable "key-recovery" encryption systems. While
providing only token relief from current export controls, the bill
would create strong incentives to force the entire domestic market
towards untested, costly and potentially insecure third-party access
to sensitive encryption keys.

Analyses of the bill are available at: (the last issue of EFFector)

Full text of the Secure Public Networks Act (S.909) is available at:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, Voters' Telecommunications Watch
and the Center for Democracy and Technology ask you to visit the web
page at, fill in the page there and send a
digital postcard to Sen. McCain urging him to reconsider his position.

For your conveniece, a copy of the e-postcard's text is appended below:

 Dear Senator McCain,

 S.909 is a grave threat to my privacy and security in the Information
 Age.  It authorizes the government to obtain private keys and other
 highly sensitive decryption information without a court order and without
 notice to me when my privacy is being compromised.

 It does not merely preserve current levels of government access, but 
 rather seeks to create a complex and burdensome system that would deprive
 me of my current privacy rights in the Information Age. 

 I urge you to reconsider your position on this bill and write me back
 with a response on this issue.



You can also participate in the Encryption Policy Resource Page's
"Adopt Your Legislator" program when you send the e-postcard, and
receive future alerts on Internet issues.  


Subject: Quote of the Day

"It is seldom that liberty of any kind is lost all at once."
  - Hume

Find yourself wondering if your privacy and freedom of speech are safe 
when bills to censor the Internet are swimming about in a sea of of 
surveillance legislation and anti-terrorism hysteria?  Worried that in 
the rush to make us secure from ourselves that our government 
representatives may deprive us of our essential civil liberties? 
Concerned that legislative efforts nominally to "protect children" will 
actually censor all communications down to only content suitable for 
the playground?  Alarmed by commercial and religious organizations abusing
the judicial and legislative processes to stifle satire, dissent and 

Join EFF! (or send any message to

You *know* privacy, freedom of speech and ability to make your voice heard
in government are important. You have probably participated in our online
campaigns and forums.  Have you become a member of EFF yet?  The best way
to protect your online rights is to be fully informed and to make your
opinions heard.  EFF members are informed and are making a difference.
Join EFF today!

Even if you don't live in the U.S., the anti-Internet hysteria will soon 
be visiting a legislative body near you.  If it hasn't already.


Subject: What YOU Can Do

* Keep an eye on your local legislature/parliament!
All kinds of wacky censorious legislation is turning up at the US state 
and non-US national levels.  Don't let it sneak by you - or by the 
online activism community. Without locals on the look out, it's very 
difficult for the Net civil liberties community to keep track of what's 
happening locally as well as globally.

* Inform your corporate government affairs person or staff counsel
if you have one. Keep them up to speed on developments you learn of,
and let your company's management know if you spot an issue that warrants
your company's involvement.

* Find out who your legislators are

Writing letters to, faxing, and phoning your representatives in Congress
is one very important strategy of activism, and an essential way of
making sure YOUR voice is heard on vital issues.

If you are having difficulty determining who your US legislators are,
try contacting your local League of Women Voters, who maintain a great 
deal of legislator information, or consult the free ZIPPER service
that matches ZIP Codes to Congressional districts with about 85%
accuracy at:
This can be double-checked with the House's own lookup service, at:

Computer Currents Interactive has provided Congress contact info, sorted 
by who voted for and against the Communications Decency Act: (NB: Some of these folks have, 
fortunately, been voted out of office.)

We are not presently aware of servers that provide contact info for US
state-level legislators, or non-US lawmakers.



EFFector is published by:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation
1550 Bryant St., Suite 725
San Francisco CA 94103 USA
+1 415 436 9333 (voice)
+1 415 436 9993 (fax)
Membership & donations:
Legal services:
General EFF, legal, policy or online resources queries:

Editor: Stanton McCandlish, Program Director/Webmaster (

This newsletter is printed on 100% recycled electrons.

Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is encouraged.  Signed
articles do not necessarily represent the views of EFF.  To reproduce
signed articles individually, please contact the authors for their express
permission. Press releases and EFF announcements may be reproduced individ-
ually at will.

To subscribe to EFFector via email, send message body of "subscribe
effector-online" (without the "quotes") to, which will add
you to a subscription list for EFFector.

Back issues are available at:, /pub/EFF/Newsletters/EFFector/

To get the latest issue, send any message to (or, and it will be mailed to you automagically.  You can also get
the file "current" from the EFFector directory at the above sites at any 
time for a copy of the current issue.  


End of EFFector Online v10 #07 Digest


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