CNN: NSA key to Windows: an open question

“Microsoft operating systems have a backdoor entrance for the
National Security Agency, a cryptography expert said Friday, but
the software giant denied the report and other experts differed on

“UC Berkeley’s David Wagner, a computer security expert, said
the “does not open a massive back door allowing NSA to spy on your
computer.’ … It could be that NSA is making it easier to manage
their own computers, Wagner said.”

“Fernandes initially gave his report at… a late-night session
where a few dozen experts in the audience were ‘shocked’ by the
alleged security flaw, said UC Berkeley cryptography researcher Ian

“Fernandes said the evidence shows that the NSA is involved in
the key but it fails to indicate who owns the key. Even if
Microsoft claims the key is its own, Fernandes said he believes the
key was put in the Windows products at the request of the NSA.

‘They’ve got their hand in the cookie jar and they’re trying to
convince you they aren’t taking a cookie, they’re checking to make
sure there’s lots of cookies left for you,’ Fernandes
said. … He called for Microsoft to be more honest about its
security infrastructure and the ‘deal they had to cut with the
government to allow the exportation of cryptography in
Windows.’ “

“The United States limits the exportation of ‘strong’
cryptography, mainly to make it easier for its intelligence
agencies to do its work.”