Almost a year ago, Ladar Levison shut down his startup “Lavabit”, which provided secure and encrypted email services to almost half a million people, including some high profile users like NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. At the time, he wasn’t allowed to talk about what actually happened, only that a US court had ordered him to give the government access to all of its emails.
But now, finally, we get to hear Ladar Levison’s side of the story.
Here’s his conclusion:
If my experience serves any purpose, it is to illustrate what most already know: courts must not be allowed to consider matters of great importance under the shroud of secrecy, lest we find ourselves summarily deprived of meaningful due process. If we allow our government to continue operating in secret, it is only a matter of time before you or a loved one find yourself in a position like I did – standing in a secret courtroom, alone, and without any of the meaningful protections that were always supposed to be the people’s defense against an abuse of the state’s power.
And, of course, we have to read about this in a foreign newspaper.