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The FBI Should Stop Undermining Norms Before They Take Root

Reports surfaced last month suggesting that Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) has been helping the FBI crack Tor, the secure browsing application used by privacy-conscious Internet users for both legal and illegal activities. Normally, an academic institution assisting law enforcement in fighting crime wouldn’t raise any eyebrows, particularly if that assistance came in the form of responding to subpoenas. But this isn’t your average case. Beyond the complicated (and unclear) set of facts involved, CMU houses the Computer Emergency Response Team Coordination Center (CERT/CC), one of the world’s most important hubs for coordinating information about various cybersecurity vulnerabilities and attacks.