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August 26, 2016
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Tag: Privacy


Secret Cameras Are Recording Baltimore’s Every Move—From the Sky

Since the start of 2016, the Baltimore Police Department has been using a privately funded and operated surveillance company to investigate crimes via a camera-equipped airplane—without informing the public.

Posted on Aug 24, 2016 READ MORE


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The Illusion of Freedom

This deception will exist as long as we “stay in our place.” Once we call out power for what it is, once we resist, the chimera will vanish. The iron fist of history’s most sophisticated security and surveillance apparatus will assert itself with a terrifying fury.

Posted on Aug 18, 2016 READ MORE



Edward Snowden Calls the Hack of NSA Hackers by ‘Shadow Brokers’ a Significant Turn in the Spy Wars

Calling a leak of sophisticated spy tools unprecedented, the whistleblower says things “could get messy fast.”

Posted on Aug 17, 2016 READ MORE



Nine FOIA Requests Seek to Find the Extent of Government Spying on Climate Protesters

The Intercept revealed last month that federal agents went undercover at a fossil fuel auction protest.

Posted on Aug 11, 2016 READ MORE



‘Smart Borders’ Would Be a Step Toward a ‘Pan-European System of Surveillance’

A digital system for tracking people as they traverse European borders threatens privacy, civil liberties and the safety and dignity of migrants fleeing their embattled homelands, critics say.

Posted on Aug 3, 2016 READ MORE



Edward Snowden: New Russian ‘Big Brother’ Law Would Savage Privacy and Personal Freedoms

The NSA whistleblower called the law moving through Russia’s Legislature an “unworkable, unjustifiable violation of rights” that would “take money and liberty from every Russian without improving safety.”

Posted on Jun 27, 2016 READ MORE



The U.S. Government Renews Its Assault on Privacy

And this time there’s “much less public scrutiny,” writes Trevor Timm at The Guardian.

Posted on Jun 22, 2016 READ MORE



FBI Wants to Exempt Its Biometric Data From Privacy Rules

The intelligence agency is facing blowback from advocacy organizations in response to its proposal for long-term storage and use of personal information—including that of people who haven’t committed crimes.

Posted on Jun 21, 2016 READ MORE


Edward Snowden Tells Vice News All About the ‘State of Surveillance’

Vice Media founder Shane Smith traveled to Moscow to learn from the NSA whistleblower exactly what the U.S. government is able to do to bypass security on our digital devices and violate our privacy.

Posted on Jun 13, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Declassified Documents Confirm That Edward Snowden Tried to Tell the NSA About Surveillance Concerns

Internal records obtained by Vice News show that the agency “did not tell the public the whole story about Snowden’s contacts with oversight authorities before he became the most celebrated and vilified whistleblower in U.S. history.”

Posted on Jun 6, 2016 READ MORE



An Appeals Court Just Robbed Us of Our Cellphone Privacy

Judges ruled that police and federal authorities are free to seek the location data of cellphone users from telecommunications companies without obtaining a search warrant.

Posted on Jun 1, 2016 READ MORE



Former Attorney General Eric Holder: Snowden Performed ‘Public Service’ but Should Be Punished

Despite his belief that the way Snowden opened the public debate on surveillance was “inappropriate and illegal,” Holder says that any judge who might try the NSA whistleblower should account for his contribution to the debate about mass surveillance.

Posted on May 31, 2016 READ MORE



Study: Mass Surveillance Breeds Meekness, Fear and Self-Censorship

Oxford researchers found that “the mere existence of a surveillance state breeds fear and conformity and stifles free expression,” Glenn Greenwald writes at The Intercept.

Posted on May 2, 2016 READ MORE



FBI Won’t Tell Apple How It Hacked iPhone but Vows to Help Local Police

“Please know that we will continue to do everything we can to help you consistent with our legal and policy constraints.”

Posted on Apr 3, 2016 READ MORE



David Medine, Leading U.S. Privacy Watchdog, Resigns Unexpectedly

The head of the independent Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board is stepping down. Why he quit so suddenly is unknown, but his recent Twitter posts reflect a concern over expansion of government surveillance.

Posted on Mar 31, 2016 READ MORE


Think the NSA Can’t Hack an iPhone Without Apple’s Help?

A secret, internal government catalog of dozens of cellphone surveillance devices displays the tricks the U.S. military and intelligence agencies can use to spy on anyone. Jeremy Scahill of The Intercept discusses the revelation.

Posted on Mar 26, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Live Blog: A Conversation on Privacy With Noam Chomsky, Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden

Finding the right balance between national security and individual rights has been a challenge since the Patriot Act was enacted.

Posted on Mar 25, 2016 READ MORE



John Cusack and an Ex-Clinton Aide Wage a War of Tweets Over Internet Freedom

The spat between the actor and former State Department staffer Alec Ross frames an issue that hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves in the presidential race.

Posted on Mar 23, 2016 READ MORE



The Apple Fight Is About All of Us

The fight between Apple and the FBI is not about just one iPhone—it implicates the security of all technology users.

Posted on Mar 19, 2016 READ MORE



Some Things You Should Know About the FCC’s Proposed Privacy Rules

They would stop Verizon’s zombie cookie in their tracks but allow AT&T to keep charging customers extra for privacy.

Posted on Mar 15, 2016 READ MORE



Facebook, Google and WhatsApp Plan to Increase Encryption of User Data

Leading Silicon Valley companies are developing their own enhanced privacy technology as Apple fights the U.S. government over encryption.

Posted on Mar 14, 2016 READ MORE


AUDIO: Robert Scheer Talks With William Binney About the iPhone and Blowing the Whistle on the NSA

In this week’s “Scheer Intelligence,” Truthdig Editor-in-Chief Robert Scheer sits down with William Binney, a former National Security Agency official turned whistleblower, to discuss the fight between Apple and the U.S. government over access to Americans’ cellphone data.

Posted on Mar 11, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



War Zone Tactics Come Home as Pentagon Admits Domestic Spy Drone Use

“The appetite to use surveillance drones in the domestic environment to collect airborne imagery continues to grow,” an internal report states.

Posted on Mar 9, 2016 READ MORE



Civil Rights Activists Say Encryption Is a Racial Justice Issue

An association of activists, including a founder of Black Lives Matter, published a letter claiming that the civil rights of minorities could be abused if the FBI gains the power to force a technology company such as Apple to undermine its users’ activities.

Posted on Mar 9, 2016 READ MORE



The FBI Has a New Plan to Spy on High School Students Across the Country

Under the federal agency’s new guidelines instructing high schools to report students who criticize government policies and “Western corruption,” Muslim students are likely to be disproportionately targeted, but virtually any young person could be deemed dangerous and worthy of surveillance.

Posted on Mar 4, 2016 READ MORE



Apple Gets Legal and Congressional Boost in Privacy Fight Against U.S. Government

First a New York judge sided with Apple in its battle with the FBI over privacy. Then the technology company helped its case in Congress.

Posted on Mar 1, 2016 READ MORE



The Human Rights Risks of Encryption ‘Back Doors’

Calls by candidates and law enforcement to undermine encryption could seriously harm many people, including sexual and gender-based rights activists, domestic violence victims, human rights defenders, psychiatrists and counselors and their clients, and journalists and their sources.

Posted on Feb 26, 2016 READ MORE



Congressman Asks FBI to Back Down on Apple

Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., is pressing FBI Director James Comey to drop the bureau’s demand that Apple create a new operating system version that lacks key security features.

Posted on Feb 23, 2016 READ MORE



San Bernardino Says FBI at Fault for Losing Data in Shooting Investigation

Apple executives say new information shows there was a way to avoid going to court in momentous privacy battle.

Posted on Feb 21, 2016 READ MORE



Like Your Privacy? Then Get Behind Apple’s Battle to Save It

The FBI is pressuring the tech giant to create a “back door” to gain access to everything on the iPhone of one of the San Bernardino terrorists. Supposedly it would be a one-time-only thing. Don’t believe it.

Posted on Feb 20, 2016 READ MORE



In Privacy Fight, Apple CEO Tim Cook Is Seen as a Model of Civic Leadership From the Private Sector

Friends and close relations say that Cook—who this week published a letter explaining his decision to resist a federal order to make his customers’ private information vulnerable to theft and surveillance—is exercising his belief that “businesses and their leaders should think of themselves as important members of civic society,” The New York Times reports.

Posted on Feb 19, 2016 READ MORE



Privacy Activists Rally Around Apple in ‘Most Important Tech Case in a Decade’

To defend users’ privacy rights, Apple is refusing to give government encrypted iPhone data in the San Bernardino shooting case.

Posted on Feb 18, 2016 READ MORE



Truthdigger of the Week: Apple’s Tim Cook

This week, it’s a no-brainer. Tim Cook is our Truthdigger of the Week for his willingness to take on the “1984”-like security state with a statement of principle on behalf of privacy.

Posted on Feb 18, 2016 READ MORE



How Did Apple End Up in the Government’s Encryption Crosshairs?

The tech giant has positioned itself as a champion of privacy by engaging in a potentially momentous conflict with the federal government over encryption.

Posted on Feb 18, 2016 READ MORE



Apple Will Fight Order to Unlock San Bernardino Shooter’s iPhone

Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook says his company will oppose a federal order to help the FBI hack into an encrypted iPhone belonging to one of the San Bernardino, Calif., shooters because compliance could undermine encryption for millions of other users.

Posted on Feb 17, 2016 READ MORE



2015: The Year in Government Secrecy

Here’s a rundown on how this past year shaped up on the issue of government accountability (hint: not well) from someone who knows quite a bit on the subject: reporter Jason Leopold, who’s familiarized himself thoroughly on the secrecy tip as well as on the Freedom of Information Act and its uses.

Posted on Dec 24, 2015 READ MORE


VIDEO: ‘Truth and Power’ Series Shows Ordinary People Flipping the Script on the Powers That Be

Unwilling to sit idly by as their privacy, civil liberties and safety are increasingly encroached upon, the subjects of Pivot’s new “Truth and Power” series took action to expose those from the government and private sector who have far overstepped their bounds.

Posted on Dec 24, 2015 WATCH & LISTEN



Google Is Accused of Spying on Kindergartners

A digital rights advocacy group has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission accusing the tech giant of spying on up to 40 million students and school officials who use the company’s Chromebook laptops.

Posted on Dec 12, 2015 READ MORE



Small-Scale Violations of Medical Privacy Often Cause the Most Harm

Breaches that expose the health details of just a patient or two are proliferating nationwide. Regulators focus on larger privacy violations and rarely take action on small ones, despite the harm.

Posted on Dec 10, 2015 READ MORE



Why Government Access to Encrypted Messages Won’t Make Us Safer

Since the Paris attacks, some officials and pundits have argued that government agencies should have a “back door” to encoded apps. But such a capability would only compromise the communications of law-abiding citizens, and terrorists would quickly find new ways to evade detection.

Posted on Nov 25, 2015 READ MORE



The Paris Attacks Are Being Used to Justify Agendas They Have Nothing to Do With

The aftermath of the Paris terrorist attacks has “devolved into a dark and dishonest debate” in which governments consider banning encryption and barring Syrian refugees from entering their countries. But the attackers were neither Syrian nor refugees and there’s no evidence they used encryption to communicate.

Posted on Nov 20, 2015 READ MORE



Encryption’s Role in the Paris Attacks Appears Negligible

Information coming out of Paris contradicts intelligence officials’ claims that Edward Snowden’s leaks and the increased use of encrypted communications helped the attackers carry out their deadly rampage.

Posted on Nov 19, 2015 READ MORE



Privacy Not Included: Federal Law Lags Behind New Tech

The federal privacy law known as HIPAA doesn’t cover home paternity tests, fitness trackers or health apps. When a Florida woman complained after seeing the paternity test results of thousands of people online, federal regulators told her they didn’t have jurisdiction.

Posted on Nov 19, 2015 READ MORE



Scapegoating Edward Snowden Is ‘Irrational’ and Troubling, Advocates Warn

Shifting the blame to “unauthorized disclosures,” security officials seize on Paris tragedy to expand the surveillance state.

Posted on Nov 18, 2015 READ MORE



Data-Grabbing ‘Stingrays’ Are Attacking Our Civil Liberties

The secrecy surrounding police use of these “anti-terrorism” devices in ordinary criminal investigations is a big and growing problem, ACLU experts say, one that puts some defendants at an unfair and illegal disadvantage.

Posted on Nov 11, 2015 READ MORE



Apple Boss Says He’ll Resist U.K. Spy Law

Apple CEO Tim Cook pledged Wednesday to resist the British government’s effort to gain access to digital users’ encrypted data through a proposed spying law.

Posted on Nov 11, 2015 READ MORE



Privacy Bill Would Make Warrantless ‘Stingray’ Surveillance Illegal

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has introduced a bill aimed at controlling the use of a surveillance tool that is disguised as a cellphone tower in order to extract metadata.

Posted on Nov 4, 2015 READ MORE



Top Tech Companies Get Failing Grade on Privacy Rights

The most comprehensive assessment to date of the user agreement policies of Facebook, Google and Microsoft says the world’s top tech companies are failing when it comes to privacy and freedom of expression.

Posted on Nov 4, 2015 READ MORE



Facing Encryption, Law Enforcement Recommends More Informants

A new document created by a state intelligence fusion center and the Department of Homeland Security says that widespread use of surveillance-hindering encryption software has created a need for more informants.

Posted on Nov 4, 2015 READ MORE


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