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Hi everyone

I saw the episode of Hak5 TV when a number of "USB goodies" were discussed. An extensive list was published subsequently.

I intended downloading these and playing around to see which I like and saw comments on the puTTY site about it being illegal in some countries. I was surprised, but I'm not familiar with the software. It said that the legal problem relates to the fact that it deals with encryption. Doesn't everyone use encryption at some time - whether making a purchase from eBay or viewing their online Bank Statement? Are these the same as that which is involved with puTTY or am I completely off track? If they are the same, is it illegal in some countries to use a PC for these reasons?

Furthermore, I've seen world maps to say whether it's illegal in some countries and whether it's illegal to export or import. What on earth does that mean?

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In different countries you are limited in what encyption you can use. I use the example of SSL in the US used to be limited to 64-bits (which is very small for SSL) because the Government prohibited the use of anything more. Windows infact used to ship in the States with IE set with a maximum encyrption of 64-bits.


I found this a while back and is an interesting read. It might answer some questions you have better than me.

I do wonder how someone looking at encrypted data could say whether it was encrypted with a more powerful encyption than was allowed. As far as I can think you could only use the argument that you can't decrypt it therefore it must be using stronger encyption and that argument wouldn't work in a court of Law.

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