What can a 200 year-old case teach us about being forced to decrypt devices for the government?

Back in 1807, the VPOTUS was charged with treason. His secretary, when asked by the government to hand over keys to a cipher to an encrypted letter, pled the Fifth. What followed was an elaborate legal examination of the 5A by leading legal practitioners of the day.

Orin S. Kerr goes back to the notes, to reconstruct an “original” understanding of 5A, soon after it came into being and explores how Chief Justice Marshall’s opinion may hold some clues on how to navigate the murky waters of balancing self-incrimination against compelled decryption of digital devices.

This is a must read both for lawyers, and tech policy aficionados.

Decryption Originalism: The Lessons of Burr


Thank you for sharing Suman! :slight_smile:

Thank’s Suman, one of my favourite Gore Vidal reads is the Empire series which starts with Burr!

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Sounds like something I ought to pick up. Thanks for the suggestion :slight_smile:

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