Back around 1999 when Pretty Good Privacy encryption came on the scene? Do you remember how the U.S. government BANNED the use of strong encryption (and Netscape was restricted to 48 bit encyryption, which was relatively easy to crack). In order to get PGP, one had to provide personal information and .. it wasn't allowed to be exported ... because it was classified as "a munition".
I wondered about that definition. How the heck could encryption be classified as a munition?
Well ... it seems more clear to me now: it was a freudian slip because it WAS used as a munition.~
They lost that battle
but they're trying to bring this issue up again ... forcing all encryption providers to have a back door so that law enforcement and snoop agencies can find out WHAT is being transmitted on the internet.