As the encryption debate continues, proponents on both sides decry the negative international side effects of the policies they oppose. This essay analyzes the claims, examining the potential effects of the specific policies being pursued. It ultimately concludes that even the “no new regulation” approach has potentially significant spillover effects. These effects are bidirectional and dynamic: US policies and practices have a spillover effect internationally; but the policies and practices of foreign actors also influence the effectiveness of any decryption policy, and thus the scope and distribution of any such effect. This highlights the need for centralized, executive-level review of sought-after decryption orders, so as to better account for the potential effects.