Yahoo to Encrypt Everything

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer recently announced that Yahoo is going to be encrypting all communications to and from their properties (I don't presume to know whether or not this includes Tumblr). This is a great PR move for Yahoo and will make users a lot safer from the average hacker. The important question is whether or not this will protect users from the NSA. Mayer seems to think so:

As you know, there have been a number of reports over the last six months about the U.S. government secretly accessing user data without the knowledge of tech companies, including Yahoo. […] There is nothing more important to us than protecting our users’ privacy. To that end, we recently announced that we will make Yahoo Mail even more secure by introducing https (SSL - Secure Sockets Layer) encryption with a 2048-bit key across our network by January 8, 2014.

Today we are announcing that we will extend that effort across all Yahoo products. More specifically this means we will:

Considering this Washington Post report I'm going with no. Allow me to quote the rather humorous caption below the article image:

In this slide from a National Security Agency presentation on “Google Cloud Exploitation,” a sketch shows where the “Public Internet” meets the internal “Google Cloud” where user data resides. Two engineers with close ties to Google exploded in profanity when they saw the drawing.

Back to Yahoo encryption. This is a win for Yahoo PR, and user security. Privacy isn't fixed yet. I think Yahoo is being a bit disingenuous by implicating that this will lead to greater privacy when the data suggests otherwise but I hardly think we should be attacking Yahoo for this. The government has tied everybody's hands. I'm hoping this signals everybody is angling for their escape.

Reagan Knopp