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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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By Strunf on 2/8/2012 7:29:24 AM , Rating: 2
If you used the password on a daily basis, sure... Your brain may forgot something really fast but if you use it very often you will remember it even after a long time!

By JediJeb on 2/8/2012 9:30:30 AM , Rating: 2
If it was so hard to remember maybe the police should look inside the battery cover to see if she hid it there ;)

By snikt on 2/8/2012 3:54:52 PM , Rating: 2
We make our users change their passwords to log on our network every 90 days, they can not use the last 3 passwords. The passwords must be at least 6 characters and alpha-numeric. This is just to log on to our domain. We have various systems that our users log in that require passwords as well. Some of our users can have as many as 5 logon accounts to use that can all be the same passwords but that's not always the case. The various systems our users log into are a little more strict with password structures: they can require up to at least 8 characters, alpha-numeric, and special characters, i.e. upper case, symbol, etc.

I can see how it is possible not to remember one or even several passwords

By Strunf on 2/9/2012 7:21:23 AM , Rating: 2
Those are network passwords, not the passwords you have on your personal computer, also if you forget one of the passwords you talk about a simple phone call to your IT guy and you have a new one right away, the password she forgot is on a whole different category cause if you forget it you lose everything.

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