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The Century Foundation and NYU Wagner are proud to present Debates of the Century @NYU Wagner, a public debate series showcasing thoughtful, informed dialogue from experts on the most vital national policy issues. The third and final event in the Spring 2016 Debate Series will examine national security. The speakers will debate the resolution:

Government should have lawful access to any encrypted message or device.

Some people believe the recent dispute between the FBI and Apple over a locked iPhone marks the return of what privacy advocates called the”crypto wars” of the 1990s, when federal authorities tried and failed to mandate government access to most forms of electronic communication. Although the FBI managed to decrypt the iPhone at issue without the company’s help, Apple and others are racing to build devices and messaging services that no one but their owners can unlock. The legal question remains unresolved in Congress, where competing bills have been introduced, and in dozens of cases pending in state and federal courts.

Law enforcement agencies believe their vital mission requires compulsory access, under valid court order, to any device or communications stream. Leading technology companies (backed by some other U.S. government voices) say they cannot meet law enforcement demands without undermining customer security and privacy against hackers and foreign adversaries. Edward Snowden and Fareed Zakaria disagree on which course better serves society at large. Should companies be required to break into their own encrypted products, and should they be allowed to sell encryption that no one can break?

The event will feature:

    • For the motion: Fareed Zakaria, Host of CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS, Author, Journalist
    • Against the motion: Edward Snowden
    • Moderated by: Barton Gellman, Author, Journalist, and The Century Foundation Senior Fellow

This event is co-hosted by The Century Foundation and:

NYU Wagner School of Public Service

NYU Wagner has been educating and preparing the world’s future public service leaders since 1938. Our students translate personal commitment into nonprofit, public, and private sector careers that have an impact on the world’s most pressing issues. Our faculty conduct research that changes the way people frame, understand, analyze, and act on issues of public importance.

*To request a press pass, please contact Lucy Muirhead at [email protected]tcf.org