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Twitter Buys Moxie Marlinspike's Crypto Startup 50

Sparrowvsrevolution writes "Twitter has confirmed that it's acquiring Whisper Systems, the mobile encryption startup founded by hacker and security researcher Moxie Marlinspike. Marlinspike has built some of the most noteworthy tools in applied cryptography over the last few years, including the encrypted calling app Redphone, the hardened Android OS WhisperCore, and Convergence, a system for fixing the broken SSL certificate authority system. Twitter won't yet say how it plans to integrate Marlinspike or his products."
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Twitter Buys Moxie Marlinspike's Crypto Startup

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  • Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by GameboyRMH ( 1153867 ) <> on Monday November 28, 2011 @04:48PM (#38194482) Journal

    A social networking company buying a company that makes security & anonymization software, what could possibly go wrong?

    • Re:Great (Score:5, Funny)

      by Jeremiah Cornelius ( 137 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @04:50PM (#38194514) Homepage Journal


      Maybe between the two of them, they can find a business model.

    • Great (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Hentes ( 2461350 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:06PM (#38194694)

      Twitter is not a social network but a messaging system with an outstanding record in defending it's customers' private data.

    • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Nerdfest ( 867930 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:22PM (#38194884)
      I would have thought Google would be throwing money at him for his Android encryption stuff. It looks very good but is currently only available for a couple of phones. It would have been a fantastic advantage for getting corporate users on Android in a big way.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        You do realize that his work on Android detracts from the ad revenue used to support its development, right?

        • That and the operators don't want it, if google started including certain things by default, the operators are stupid enough to stop allowing android phones on their networks, then HTC, Samsung... stop making them and bam, no more android.
    • Same thing was said for a book seller and cloud services.

      Regarding this story though, first thing that came to my mind was occupying the space that will soon to be created by Blackberry's downfall.
    • Re:Great (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Beardo the Bearded ( 321478 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:50PM (#38195246)

      What could possibly go wrong?

      If you're a totalitarian regime that cripples the communication of your country to beat the shit out of the populace, plenty.

      Twitter has been fucking up countries. Once you get encrypted twitter, it's going to get a lot harder to stay in charge.

    • Why in the world do people call twitter social networking like say a faceboook ?

      What makes Micro-bloging? or text message syndication? a "social network". No personal information need be involved, there is no friending or circles or cliques or whatever.

      Or perhaps it IS a social network and what we need is a new name for things like facebook? Like maybe "social disease"?
  • I know where their works come, his name (Awesome and cryptic)
  • Twitter has confirmed it, but has Netcraft? Until Netcraft confirms it I won't believe it!

  • by swb ( 14022 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:11PM (#38194756)

    So he'll be forced to use something less grating?

  • Interestingly, all his projects seem to have disappeared from the web. Redphone is nowhere to be found on the android market, and Whispercore has a little note on his website saying, "temporarily unavailable."
    • by loftwyr ( 36717 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:43PM (#38195148)

      From their updates page:

      "The Transition:

      The Whisper Systems software as our users know it will live on (and we have some surprises in store that we're excited about), but there is unfortunately a transition period where we will have to temporarily take our products and services offline. RedPhone service will be interrupted immediately, but FlashBack users have a month to pull off any backup data they would like before that service also goes offline. "

  • by bsDaemon ( 87307 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @05:22PM (#38194882)

    Possibly Twitter is buying into all the hype about how they're basically responsible for revolution and social change in the Middle East and is doing this to become further entrenched as the tool of choice for political dissidents? I'm pretty sure that's the type of business model that lands your products on trade restriction lists prettt quickly, but I can't see what else they want this for.

    • change in the Middle East...

      What social change? The cops are still shooting at people. And, as the old cliche goes, the 'new boss is the same as the old boss'. Individuals come and go. The system stands forever.

      • by bsDaemon ( 87307 )

        I think things are going relatively well in Tunisia at this point, if not Egypt/Syria/Yemen.

    • by makomk ( 752139 )

      Apparently this is actually harming attempts at social change in the Middle East, because people there that were previously using RedPhone to communicate have found it totally disabled without any advance warning.

  • Trademark (Score:4, Funny)

    by the eric conspiracy ( 20178 ) on Monday November 28, 2011 @06:34PM (#38195682)

    Well besides the talents of Mr. Marlinspike and associates which will no doubt be useful, there is the trademark "Whisper" that Twitter is gaining.

    So in addition to Tweeting you will be able to Whisper.

  • Did that guy come from a blaxploitation movie?

If graphics hackers are so smart, why can't they get the bugs out of fresh paint?