End-to-end encryption under child protection rules

End-to-end encryption is applied in various communication services. It provides secure communications and affords its users privacy. However, encryption also makes it difficult for law enforcement to detect and investigate the distribution of images of child sexual abuse via these services. Recently, various policymakers, including the Dutch government, have proposed to restrict encryption in chat messaging services in order to allow for lawful access to combat the distribution of images of child sexual abuse. The ILP Lab is investigating whether states have a positive obligation to restrict encryption for this purpose, taking into account its obligations to protect children’s rights.

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