U.S. government standards appear to be designed to enable spying by the National Security Agency. According to a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) panel, there are widely used coding formulas that should be jettisoned.
The panel was commissioned by the NIST after a required formula, called Dual Elliptic Curve, had a back door which was being used as a Trojan horse for the NSA. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been legally required to consult with the NSAâ€™s defensive experts in approving them and other cryptography standards.
NIST discontinued that formula, called Dual Elliptic Curve, and asked its external advisory board and a special panel of experts to make recommendations that were published on Monday alongside more biting conclusions by the individual experts. As a whole, the panels recommended that NIST review its obligation to confer with the NSA and seek legal changes â€śwhere it hinders its ability to independently develop the best cryptographic standards to serve not only the United States government but the broader community.â€ť
It asked the NIST to weigh the advice of individual task force members who made more dramatic suggestions, such as calling for the replacement of a larger set of curves approved for authenticating users, in part because they were selected through unclear means by the NSA.