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Ramona Fricosu's attorney says she may have forgotten the password

Last month, a Colorado woman was ordered to decrypt her laptop in order to help prosecutors obtain evidence in the bank fraud case against her. Now, Ramona Fricosu's attorney is saying that the defendant may have forgotten her password, further prolonging the case and getting prosecutors nowhere with the hard drive.

"It's very possible to forget passwords," said Philip Dubois, Fricosu's attorney. "It's not clear to me she was the one who set up the encryption on this drive. I don't know if she will be able to decrypt it. The government will probably say you need to put her in jail until she breaks down and does what she is ordered to do. That will create a question of fact for the judge to resolve. If she's unable to decrypt the disc, the court cannot hold her in contempt."

Davies said Fricosu has not said in any court documents that she has forgotten the password. They are waiting to see what position she takes in court.

Fricosu was accused of bank fraud in 2010, and had her laptop seized by authorities for investigative purposes. When attempting to search her hard drive, authorities found that it was encrypted using full disk encryption, which prevents unauthorized access to data storage. The option can be found in operating systems like Mac OS and Windows, and if authorities tried to crack it themselves, they could damage the computer.

Colorado U.S. District Judge Robert Blackburn then ordered Fricosu to decrypt her hard drive and return it to the court so prosecutors could use the files against her in the bank fraud case. Fricosu tried using the Fifth Amendment to protect herself, arguing that it protects her from compelled self-incrimination.

However, Blackburn concluded that "the Fifth Amendment is not implicated by requiring production of unencrypted contents of the Toshiba Satellite M305 laptop computer." Assistant U.S. Attorney Patricia Davies backed Blackburn's decision, saying that encryption cannot be a sure way for criminals to bypass the system.

Source: Wired

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RE: This is just great!
By Kung Lau on 2/7/2012 8:33:53 PM , Rating: 2
The good thing about laws is that you can create new ones to circumvent the ones in the way.

Or just label her a terrorist against the U.S banking system or something along those lines and get a Jack Bauer type involved. She will remember.

Where there's a will there's a way.

RE: This is just great!
By Visual on 2/8/2012 6:49:20 AM , Rating: 2
Dude, what the beep?
I can imagine an accidental double post happening from time to time, but yours... seven times spread over a whole of 2 minutes... how did you manage that?

RE: This is just great!
By SlyNine on 2/8/2012 5:02:07 PM , Rating: 2
Well, he did say where there is a will there is a way.

Kinda remindes me of homer burning cereal. For some things, there's just no excuse.

RE: This is just great!
By formulav8 on 2/8/2012 11:05:14 AM , Rating: 2
OK we get it already :P

"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town." -- Charlie Miller

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