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EU Court Upholds Human Rights in Encryption Ruling

EU Court of Human Rights rules against encryption backdoors, citing threats to privacy and freedom of expression. The landmark decision sets a precedent for upholding fundamental rights in the digital age.

The European Court of Human Rights has delivered a landmark ruling, asserting that creating backdoors to end-to-end encrypted messaging services violates fundamental human rights.

Protecting Freedom of Expression

In a judgment issued on Feb. 13, the court emphasized that mandating encryption backdoors, as demanded by some governments, would jeopardize freedom of expression and subject innocent users to various threats, including hackers, identity thieves, and state surveillance.

Case Background

The case centered around Anton Podchasov, a Telegram user who challenged his government's demand for access to encrypted messages sent via the platform's "secret chat" feature. Podchasov argued that such a requirement would compromise the privacy of all users, including those not involved in criminal activities.

Ruling Highlights

The court ruled in favor of Podchasov, asserting that encryption backdoors pose a significant risk to individuals' rights to privacy and freedom of expression. It emphasized that alternative methods, such as accessing communication devices, could be employed for monitoring encrypted communications without compromising user privacy.


This ruling sets a precedent for upholding privacy rights in the face of increasing pressure to weaken encryption for law enforcement purposes. It reaffirms the importance of safeguarding individuals' rights to privacy and freedom of expression in the digital age.


The European Court of Human Rights' decision underscores the critical role of encryption in protecting individuals' fundamental rights. By rejecting the notion of encryption backdoors, the court reaffirms its commitment to upholding human rights principles in the digital realm.