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Last post Author Topic: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds  (Read 10698 times)

wraith808

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From Lavabit.com

Quote
My Fellow Users,

I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what’s going on--the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise. As things currently stand, I cannot share my experiences over the last six weeks, even though I have twice made the appropriate requests.

What’s going to happen now? We’ve already started preparing the paperwork needed to continue to fight for the Constitution in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. A favorable decision would allow me resurrect Lavabit as an American company.

This experience has taught me one very important lesson: without congressional action or a strong judicial precedent, I would _strongly_ recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.

Sincerely,
Ladar Levison
Owner and Operator, Lavabit LLC

(via Gizmodo)

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2013, 08:10:51 PM »
Well, it's a little murkier than that. There really is a basic level of "safety through security" in that we don't (yet?!!) have Jackboots marching down the streets. So if you just live your life, you'll get through most days.

But Snowden isn't exactly a dummy - he clearly knew he's in Whole Hog on this, and that's taking it to a whole other level. So speaking of Chaos, everything around him is going to go through a distortion field.


40hz

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2013, 09:36:24 PM »
Finally. The first company "in the biz" takes a firm pubic stand on the issue and really puts its entire business on the line in protest.

Lets see if that motivates others in the industry to follow suit.

This could be the start of a cyber Bastille Day. :Thmbsup:




Vurbal

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2013, 10:20:52 PM »
I wouldn't be too worried about "the industry." Have you noticed how all the people running around, appearing on news shows, and holding press conferences just keep repeating the same things over and over even though nobody believes them? It's not because they think they're fooling anyone. They're just so out of touch with the rest of the world they literally don't know how to do anything else.

What matters is that the masses have realized the emperor has no clothes and suddenly the spell is broken. A month ago people were scared not to go along with the government. Now they're just scared of the government. And now they're looking back at what we've been telling them for years and suddenly it makes sense. At the end of the day that's all people are looking for. Somebody to fill in the blanks they can't fill in for themselves.

No matter how charming or convincing or threatening you are sooner or later you have to deliver. Almost everyone can tell the difference between the real thing and a fake. Some people just take a lot longer than others.
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Renegade

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2013, 10:32:40 PM »
Holy crap! He flushed 10 years of his life down the toilet rather than cave in to the criminals in power.

Dude is a H.E.R.O!

Lets see if that motivates others in the industry to follow suit.

Let's hope and pray. If enough people stop cooperating with the criminals in power (Crips?), things will get better.
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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2013, 10:42:38 PM »
I wouldn't be too worried about "the industry." Have you noticed how all the people running around, appearing on news shows, and holding press conferences just keep repeating the same things over and over even though nobody believes them? It's not because they think they're fooling anyone. They're just so out of touch with the rest of the world they literally don't know how to do anything else.

q9FSRC4.png

;D

What matters is that the masses have realized the emperor has no clothes and suddenly the spell is broken. A month ago people were scared not to go along with the government. Now they're just scared of the government. And now they're looking back at what we've been telling them for years and suddenly it makes sense. At the end of the day that's all people are looking for. Somebody to fill in the blanks they can't fill in for themselves.

No matter how charming or convincing or threatening you are sooner or later you have to deliver. Almost everyone can tell the difference between the real thing and a fake. Some people just take a lot longer than others.

I hope you're right. The "fringe lunatics" have been screaming at the tops of their lungs about these issues for decades. There is literature on related topics going back to the 1910's & 1920's.
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Vurbal

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2013, 10:53:43 PM »
I hope you're right. The "fringe lunatics" have been screaming at the tops of their lungs about these issues for decades. There is literature on related topics going back to the 1910's & 1920's.
What we have that they didn't is the Internet. It's not that the technology is somehow special. It's just that the propaganda only works to the extent that censorship allows it. Humans, as irrational as we are as a species have this bizarre ability to create a sort of social supercomputer that is ultimately greater than any of us separately.

Censorship disrupts that so propaganda can mislead us. Except that we, you and I, aren't affected by it when we route around the error. That's really what the Internet is if you think about it. A simplistic model of human communication.
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Edvard

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2013, 11:24:40 PM »
Damn damn damn damn  >:( >:( >:( >:(

Lavabit was MY email provider.  I used it because they were a small, relatively unknown email provider (read: smaller target), they used Linux servers (gotta support the flock :) ), but more importantly, they kept your email encrypted, with no master key.  Only YOU could read your email.  Ever. 

So, this is what it comes down to.  Submit to being spied upon at whim or else no goodies for you.

This is no longer a matter of whether it's not the United States I and millions of others used to know.  This is no longer the United States of America as defined by it's founding documents, period. 

P.S. If anyone knows of a good email service provider with a similar policy, please let me know.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2013, 11:39:20 PM »
Damn damn damn damn  >:( >:( >:( >:(

Lavabit was MY email provider.  I used it because they were a small, relatively unknown email provider (read: smaller target), they used Linux servers (gotta support the flock :) ), but more importantly, they kept your email encrypted, with no master key.  Only YOU could read your email.  Ever.

That sucks. Sorry to hear it.
Quote
So, this is what it comes down to.  Submit to being spied upon at whim or else no goodies for you.

This is no longer a matter of whether it's not the United States I and millions of others used to know.  This is no longer the United States of America as defined by it's founding documents, period.
It's a basic lesson people need to learn and pass on to future generations (who will eventually forget it just like every other generation). Liberty and democracy are not something that can be bestowed, bequeathed, or inherited. They must be taken - not necessarily by force but always by force of will, and they must be maintained the same way.

Revolution does not have to mean war. But it always means standing up to the government and saying no.

In the words of Thomas Jefferson, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."
I learned to say the pledge of allegiance
Before they beat me bloody down at the station
They haven't got a word out of me since
I got a billion years probation
- The MC5

Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the danger of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of ''crackpot'' than the stigma of conformity.
- Thomas J. Watson, Sr

It's not rocket surgery.
- Me


I recommend reading through my Bio before responding to any of my posts. It could save both of us a lot of time and frustration.

Renegade

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #9 on: August 09, 2013, 10:32:49 AM »
Lets see if that motivates others in the industry to follow suit.

Sigh... Be careful what you wish for... You just may get it...  :'(

http://www.techdirt....to-do-so-later.shtml

Quote
another secure email provider, Silent Circle, chose to announce its own plans to close down its secure email service hours later. Silent Circle isn't facing the same hidden court orders/government demands, but it recognized that it would likely come some day soon -- and thus it was better to shut down ahead of time, before the government forced it to make the same decision.

Well, I guess that opens up the possibility for secure email services to start up business outside of the US.

Just a quick question... Has anybody perchance happened to notice WHERE/WHO all these problems originate with?  :-\

Revolution does not have to mean war. But it always means standing up to the government and saying no.

In the words of Thomas Jefferson, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."

+1
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wraith808

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2013, 10:38:26 AM »
Revolution does not have to mean war. But it always means standing up to the government and saying no.

In the words of Thomas Jefferson, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."

And I add a warning from the past:


Renegade

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #11 on: August 09, 2013, 11:30:33 AM »
Revolution does not have to mean war. But it always means standing up to the government and saying no.

In the words of Thomas Jefferson, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."

And I add a warning from the past:



I love how he opens.

However, this:

Quote
The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war.

He couldn't have been more wrong. The question then is who and why?
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40hz

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2013, 11:32:24 AM »
This is no longer a matter of whether it's not the United States I and millions of others used to know.  This is no longer the United States of America as defined by it's founding documents, period.

Yes. Isn't it amazing that fewer than 1 in 100 Americans realizes that the U.S. government has been overthrown - not by the communists, or Al Qaeda, or anyone else we've been repeatedly warned about - but by some self-proclaimed "patriots" with the U.S. government itself.

There's a term for what's happened in the United States. But say it softly. Because coup d'état is a foreign term for something that's only supposed to happen in foreign places. Not here.
 :(

40hz

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #13 on: August 09, 2013, 11:34:41 AM »
However, this:

Quote
The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war.

He couldn't have been more wrong. The question then is who and why?

I don't think he was wrong. If anything, he was prescient.

Because the version of the United States we're living in right now is a country nobody knows.

Us included.


40hz

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2013, 11:48:58 AM »
Sigh... Be careful what you wish for... You just may get it...  :'(

Yeah? Well...considering how much I've been getting of everything I haven't wished for, I'll take my chances... :P ;D

wraith808

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #15 on: August 09, 2013, 01:24:18 PM »
However, this:

Quote
The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war.

He couldn't have been more wrong. The question then is who and why?

I don't think he was wrong. If anything, he was prescient.

Because the version of the United States we're living in right now is a country nobody knows.

Us included.



This :(

I look back to the days when coding didn't mean that you had to pay attention to political winds, people respected politicians, and people respected police... and I look at things now.  If we knew then what we know now, would coders and technophiles have been willing to let things come to this?  Technological complacency led to the exploitation of that same tech to the point that now we have to look at it with a scrutinizing eye- not just to how it could be used for good, but also for evil. 

Very much akin to the introduction of nuclear energy- but with a less obvious downside.  Hackers were the bad people, and we didn't really have to worry about them, because they were lawbreakers.  But if this kind of thing had been discussed then- the possibilities of an electronic surveillance state because we have voluntarily tied our lives to technology to a frightening and exciting extent... what kind of conversations would have happened?  And would it have made a difference?

I guess we'll never know.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2013, 01:29:40 PM by wraith808 »

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #16 on: August 09, 2013, 02:52:35 PM »
This is no longer a matter of whether it's not the United States I and millions of others used to know.  This is no longer the United States of America as defined by it's founding documents, period.

Yes. Isn't it amazing that fewer than 1 in 100 Americans realizes that the U.S. government has been overthrown - not by the communists, or Al Qaeda, or anyone else we've been repeatedly warned about - but by some self-proclaimed "patriots" with the U.S. government itself.

There's a term for what's happened in the United States. But say it softly. Because coup d'état is a foreign term for something that's only supposed to happen in foreign places. Not here.
 :(

Naw, I really want to get the terminology straight - the Govt hasn't been overthrown.

The Govt has succumbed to systemic abuses of power.


wraith808

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2013, 02:59:58 PM »
Naw, I really want to get the terminology straight - the Govt hasn't been overthrown.

The Govt has succumbed to systemic abuses of power.


I'd disagree with that assessment.  Succumb means to Fail to resist (pressure, temptation, or some other negative force).  That puts the onus back on the members, even in a backhanded fashion.  On the other hand, overthrow is an active verb, meaning A removal from power; a defeat or downfall.  That puts the onus where it should be... on those who actively have gamed the system to turn it into something that it wasn't meant to be.  There is not a systemic failure of society or the government that is in power, but rather abuses (in some cases criminal) that people need to be punished for.  Again, there needs to be a Reckoning (or a Wreckening as Ren corrected me when I went on this rant before).  It needs to be realize that someone did this to us, rather than it was an inevitability given the level of corruption and such.  One empowers, the other leads to a feeling of futility.  And the patient isn't dead.. so there is a place for hope.

Sorry... I rant against that whenever I see it.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #18 on: August 09, 2013, 03:01:23 PM »
The Govt has succumbed to systemic abuses of power.

That's just a sugar coating ... The government put in place by the founding fathers has been indeed been overthrown by the corporate overlords in their bloodquest of petty interests.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2013, 03:46:40 PM »
Lavabit was MY email provider.  I used it because they were a small, relatively unknown email provider (read: smaller target), they used Linux servers (gotta support the flock :) ), but more importantly, they kept your email encrypted, with no master key.  Only YOU could read your email.  Ever.  

Not strictly true - unless all you senders and recipients also use the same service and you can guarantee end to end encryption (with methods the government don't have backdoors into - I suspect they can get into most of them) your email can be read on the servers of people who write to you and who receive emails from you. OK it would make life a bit more difficult but really it is just processing time if they take an interest. I would guess using encryption is likely to make them keener to read your stuff.

The UK has an interesting policy - it is illegal to use encrypted mail - you can use encryption for transport but not on the servers. GCHQ has to be able to read all your email - they haven't enough to do with real terrorism.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2013, 04:32:47 PM »
Quote
Not strictly true - unless all you senders and recipients also use the same service and you can guarantee end to end encryption

OK, yes, this much is true.  However, the central location where it ALL can be found would be on their server, which would be a much juicier prize, and if it's true that Lavabit was Edward Snowden's email preference, it would obviously be their first target in any prosecution proceedings.

Personally, I am just not that paranoid, or else I would have my family and friends all using GPG or some such when they communicate with me.  No, it was more about the peace of mind that my email account had some protection against ne'er-do-wells who would look through my mail for other attack vectors (bank account and business transaction names and communications, like eBay, PayPal, etc.)  Little did I know it would be my own government the ones come a-knockin'.
So what's the point of my concern?  Why do I think they would they care about lil' ol' me?  And why should I care about my government going looking for evidence it has a right to look for in a criminal case?  

Because with everything that's been happening lately, there is no longer any doubt that it is they who are the criminals.  This government has firmly and forever overstepped the bounds of the Constitution it claims to derive it's existence from.   I really try not to be political, and this isn't a rant against the Left or Right or anyone else, it is just the facts as they are manifest.  I mean, I'm with Wraith, it shouldn't have to be like this.  The simple choice of email provider shouldn't be a political action.  But now it is, and we are the worse off for it.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2013, 05:25:43 PM »
"Ask not what your Country can do to you, but, what can You do to your country"

The Next Political Sales Pitch

(sorry JFK, we screwed the pooch)

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #22 on: August 10, 2013, 10:18:37 AM »
...This experience has taught me one very important lesson: without congressional action or a strong judicial precedent, I would _strongly_ recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.
An odd thing to say. Why say it? What he recommends was patently obvious from the moment the Guardian published the Snowden leaks. And it's not necessarily confined to just those with physical ties to the United States, either.
What else was pretty obvious was that if you don't comply, then things are going to get brutally violent PDQ.
The NSA/US Government has us all snookered.

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2013, 01:04:30 PM »
it's not necessarily confined to just those with physical ties to the United States, either.

This!

Despite all the fine talk, it seems many of the so-called Western "Democracies" are either working hand in glove with the USA on this - or have instituted effectively identical programs of their own.

This is not just an American issue although the most egregious offender does seem to be the Obama administration at this point. It is a global issue where the ruling elites, no matter what form of government mandate they operate under, have apparently declared a secret war on the very people they are supposed to be serving.

So it goes. :-\

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Re: Edward Snowden's Email Provider Shut Down Rather Than Comply With Feds
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2013, 10:30:15 PM »
Because with everything that's been happening lately, there is no longer any doubt that it is they who are the criminals.  This government has firmly and forever overstepped the bounds of the Constitution it claims to derive it's existence from.   

I really hope not "forever". :(

I really try not to be political, and this isn't a rant against the Left or Right or anyone else, it is just the facts as they are manifest.  I mean, I'm with Wraith, it shouldn't have to be like this.  The simple choice of email provider shouldn't be a political action.  But now it is, and we are the worse off for it.

Unfortunately, as you've pointed out, more and more (basically everything) is becoming politicized.

<idiotmode>Don't like being spied on? Ooops. That's a political topic, so it's taboo. Just shut up and take it.
Don't like being kidnapped and caged for flowers, eggs, rain, or tomatoes? More taboo political topics. Just shut up and take it.

'Cause ya gotta give some to get some.</idiotmode>

(I could list a huge number of everyday activities that have become political issues.)

Technically, email is permanently and fundamentally broken. There's no hope for it. The only thing you can do is to use some other form of communication with strong encryption and hope that the recorded version isn't cracked before you check out of Prison Planet Earth.

Any time a topic becomes political, there's a serious problem, and most likely it isn't the thing itself - the problem is the people that have forced it into a political spotlight.

Just how idiotic is it for email, milk, eggs, tomatoes, or normal everyday life to become political?

Wanting to plant tomatoes in your home garden isn't political, but it has become that.
Wanting to drink a different kind of milk isn't political, but it has become that.
Wanting to communicate with people in private isn't political, but it has become that.
Wanting to use rain barrels isn't political, but it has become that.

All of those things are just normal parts of life. Who is anyone to tell others how to live their lives? Who is anyone to force you to do anything?

Slowly, slowly, slowly... the quiet creeping of the totalitarian tip-toe... bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit they byte you! :P ;D 
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