Press Release


McCaul, DHS Tackle Terrorist Abuse of Encryption

DHS Establishes Initiative to Collaborate with Key Players, Address Security Issues

Washington, D.C. – House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) recently wrote to the Department of Homeland Security, requesting the Secretary convene an advisory body of experts to help the Department—and the wider intelligence and law enforcement community—better understand and respond to the challenges posed by terrorist abuse of widely available encryption technologies. In many ways, this reflects the Chairman’s longstanding call for leaders in the private sector and across government and civil society to work together on this issue.

As outlined in the Committee’s “Going Dark, Going Forward” report last year, encryption technologies safeguard Americans’ personal information from bad actors, but this same digital security can present significant barriers to lawful access to digital evidence and other information critical to the safety and security of Americans.

Chairman McCaul: For years, I have advocated for greater collaboration between leaders across law enforcement, tech community, and other stakeholders to help solve pressing national security issues, including terrorists’ abuse of widely-available encrypted communications tools. I am pleased the Department is taking action to bring together the key players to address this and related security issues so we can find ways to improve cooperation between law enforcement, national security communities, private industry and others. I look forward to continued engagement with the Department and its Homeland Security Advisory Council so we can better to keep criminals and terrorists from exploiting these technologies. The safety and security of our citizens demand no less.”