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Encryption technology bolsters your privacy

 

 
For Immediate Release
(22 March 1999)
Contact:
Sue Richards
202-298-9055

 

One issue on Capitol Hill has Conservatives and Liberals, Democrats and Republicans joining forces... ENCRYPTION!

Washington, DC-- Strong encryption, the technology that "encodes" computer files to protect privacy, is critical to electronic commerce, our national security, and our nation's internationally linked infrastructure--airport control systems, electric power grids, financial centers. Protecting American interests requires that we be the world leaders in encryption technology.

The SAFE Act is on the fast track in Congress and your Representative in Washington, as a member of the House Judiciary Committee, will play a critical role this week in determining the fate of this important piece of legislation.
The Security and Freedom through Encryption (SAFE) Act of 1999, seeks to protect Americans' right to use the strongest possible encryption, while lifting export restrictions on U.S.-made encryption.

Current export restrictions hamstring U.S. manufacturers from exporting strong encryption products and threaten our nation's leadership role, as they don't provide a level playing field in the global market place. This means lost market share, dollars and American jobs. According to a study released last year by the Economic Strategy Institute, encryption export controls will cost the U.S. economy $40 billion to $97 billion over the next five years.

The Administration's Industrial Age policy ignores the fact that in the Information Age, strong encryption products are widely available from more than 20 foreign countries including Russia and Iran. In addition, strong encryption for many applications can be downloaded from the Internet. This renders America's encryption export policy an exercise in futility.

THE TIME IS NOW TO INFORM YOUR LISTENERS...The encryption issue has a profound impact on every citizen in this country and it needs to be discussed on the airwaves. Policy makers in Washington need to hear from their constituents as they make decisions that will determine whether or not America maintains its technological leadership in the 21st century. Americans for Computer Privacy, a broad-based coalition comprised of more than 100 companies and 40 associations, can provide you with a knowledgeable guest with insights on this issue that are sure to guarantee a thought-provoking program. Please call Sue Richard or Kristin Litterst at 202-625-1256 to book a guest. To learn more, check out our web site at www.computerprivacy.org

What lawmakers have to say about the SAFE Act: "It has broad bi-partisan support in the Congress…because it is a common sense issue. We think our country can and should compete." Democratic Minority Whip David Bonior (D-MI)

"This bill is good for America. And it is crucial to keeping America on the cutting edge of new technologies and services. Government controls that block innovation in the high-tech industry cost us our competitive advantage and ultimately cost us jobs." Republican Majority Leader Richard Armey (R-TX)

"This bill is important for individual privacy, it is important for our national security, and it is important for our ability to compete globally." Representative David Dreier(R-CA)


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