Bernstein v. US Department of Justice
While a graduate student at the University of California at Berkeley, Bernstein completed the development of an encryption equation (an "algorithm") he calls "Snuffle." Bernstein wishes to publish a) the algorithm (b) a mathematical paper describing and explaining the algorithm and (c) the "source code" for a computer program that incorporates the algorithm. Bernstein also wishes to discuss these items at mathematical conferences, college classrooms and other open public meetings. The Arms Export Control Act and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (the ITAR regulatory scheme) required Bernstein to submit his ideas about cryptography to the government for review, to register as an arms dealer, and to apply for and obtain from the government a license to publish his ideas. Failure to do so would result in severe civil and criminal penalties. Bernstein believes this is a violation of his First Amendment rights and has sued the government.
After four years and one regulatory change, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that software source code was speech protected by the First Amendment and that the government's regulations preventing its publication were unconstitutional.
Lets Prof. Bernstein post Snuffle 5.0 and updates to it, but no other programs. This is in effect until the appeal of the case is finished.
Yesterday a federal judge here denied a
government motion to silence mathematician Daniel Bernstein.
On August 25, District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel declared the
Commerce Department's cryptography regulations unconstitutional.
Judge Patel also issued an injunction to prohibit prosecution of Prof.
Bernstein and others who...
Brief minutes of the phone conference held among Judge Patel, Cindy Cohn, and Anthony Coppolino, regarding the government's emergency request for a stay....
The Federal District Court here
struck down Commerce Department export restrictions on the privacy
technology called encryption yesterday, concluding that "the
encryption regulations are an unconstitutional prior restraint in
violation of the First Amendment." For the first time, Judge Marilyn
Hall Patel ordered the government...
The Justice Department said today it is considering
what further legal measures it will take following yesterday's ruling by
the U.S. District Court in San Francisco that certain aspects of the
government's regulations on the export of encryption software are
unconstitutional. Another federal court upheld the...