Something that has been in the news recently is the case where the authorities are 99% certain that there is some relevant information regarding the London Terrorist incident to be found on his WhatsApp account, but due to the encryption protocol are unable to access it, and WhatsApp are refusing to allow them access to this.
Therein lies the ethical question. What price the cost of Privacy?
Personally, I am all in favour of encrypted privacy, as it is the best defence against Spammers, Scammers & Identity Theft & all sorts of Cyber Security. However, I believe that when it comes to National / International Security & other levels of Criminal Investigation, then the relevant authorities should be allowed access to this. I have always been a believer of the "If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to worry about" principle. However, I am also aware of the strong leaning from others towards it being the "Thin end of the wedge towards Big Brother". Remember, this isn't merely restricted to acts of Terrorism, but a plethora of other criminal activities as well. After all, the security of WhatsApp encryption is a Godsend for Paedophiles to share their images, for example. Is this a valid argument or is it just Scaremongering?