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Mathematicians Urge Colleagues to Snub NSA

Forbes reports on a movement afoot to deter mathematicians from working for the National Security Agency (NSA).

The NSA is said to be the largest employer of mathematicians in the country, and yet, in light of recent revelations about mass surveillance, mathematicians like Thomas Hales (University of Pittsburgh), Alexander Beilinson (University of Chicago), and Keith Devlin (Stanford University) would like to see the mathematical community distance itself from the agency.

Forbes writer Kashmir Hill quotes Devlin:

I think mathematicians should refuse to work for the NSA until they both follow the US Constitution and demonstrate responsible use of mathematical tools. The latter is something they clearly failed to do by engineering weaknesses into mathematical crypto systems, which mathematicians know to be a very dangerous thing to do. I think it is very regrettable that the current NSA leadership has broken the immense goodwill that most of us in the mathematical community once had toward them.

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Start Date: 
Friday, June 20, 2014