Gates: security isn't all big brother

Thursday, 26 June 2003, 1:10 PM EST

Gates told a homeland security conference on Wednesday afternoon that Orwell's dystopian vision of the future, in which Big Brother used technology as a form of social control, "didn't come true, and I don't believe it will."

Microsoft's chief software architect used his appearance in Washington to stress his company's willingness to work with the federal government on combating terrorism and to tout his company's Trustworthy Computing initiative and its controversial "next-generation secure computing base," a project previously known as Palladium. "We're working with a variety of hardware and software partners to provide this level of protection against future viruses, threats from hackers or anyone seeking to acquire personal information or digital property with malicious intent," Gates said.

"This technology can make our country more secure and prevent the nightmare vision of George Orwell at the same time," Gates said. "Orwell didn't anticipate how technology can be used to protect privacy. The fact that technology can protect both security and privacy by protecting the computer systems and the information on them is a positive thing."

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