In their coalition agreement, Germany’s new coalition government outlined their policy positions for the next four years. (1) In the agreement, the new German government came out strongly in support of end-to-end encryption and firmly opposed to encryption backdoors. In an interview with EURACTIV, Jens Zimmermann, the digital policy expert for the Social Democrats, noted “that the German coalition negotiations had made it ‘quite clear’ that the incoming government of the Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens and the business-friendly liberal FDP would reject ‘the weakening of encryption, which is being attempted under the guise of the fight against child abuse’ by the coalition partners.” (2)
The new German Government position seems to be the most pro-encryption position held by a European government and could have an impact in the ongoing encryption debate at the level of the European Union.
In this virtual panel hosted by the Global Encryption Coalition on 26 January 2022 at 14.00 UTC, experts will discuss the new position from the German government on encryption, including if it is likely to be reflected in German policy, how it was shaped, and ways to promote similar pro-encryption positions in other countries. They will also explore the potential impact on ongoing encryption policy debates at the European level, such as around the Digital Services Act or the European Commission’s anti-CSAM initiative.
– Asha Allen, Advocacy Director for Europe, Online Expression & Civic Space, Centre for Democracy and Technology
– Hanna Bozakov, Press Officer, Tutanota
– Dr. Sven Herpig, Director for International Cybersecurity Policy, Stiftung Neue Verantwortung
– Ryan Polk, Senior Policy Advisor, Internet Society