The Senate is voting this week on the Cybersecurity Act of 2012, which would let companies like Facebook and Google monitor our online communications and then pass that data to the government without a warrant. We need to amend the bill to put in stronger safeguards for privacy and stop attempts to remove privacy protections while maintaining opposition to the bill.
Use the American Library Association's tool to automatically call your U.S. senators' offices. You will be given talking points to help inform your Senators about the importance of privacy.
Use EFF's interactive tool to tweet at your U.S. senators using #DefendPrivacy. Show them all the unnecessary personal info this cyber spying bill will collect on everyday Internet users.
A federal district court judge granted a motion by the Internet Archive to block enforcement of an overbroad Washington state anti-sex trafficking statute. The law could make online service providers criminally liable for providing access to third parties' offensive materials and likely violates the First Amendment and the Federal Communications Decency Act. EFF is representing Internet Archive in the case.
Senators John McCain and Kay Bailey Hutchison have proposed several amendments to the latest cybersecurity bill that would hand the reins of the U.S.'s cybersecurity systems to the National Security Agency (NSA), which has proven it can't be trusted with protecting Americans' privacy.
EFF is urging a Washington State judge to dismiss "cyberstalking" charges stemming from rude comments left on a blog. In an amicus brief, EFF argued that the case is based on an unconstitutional law that criminalizes free speech.
As Congress and the president rush to re-authorize the dangerous FISA Amendments Act (FAA), Americans' communications are still being unconstitutionally collected by the government without a warrant. On Friday, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) begrudgingly agreed, acknowledging that, "on at least one occasion" the secret FISA court "held that some collection... used by the government was unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment."
For more than a year now, EFF has encouraged mainstream press publications like the New York Times to aggressively defend WikiLeaks' First Amendment right to publish classified information in the public interest and denounce the ongoing grand jury investigating WikiLeaks as a threat to press freedom. At a House Judiciary subcommittee hearing on July 11th, some members of Congress made it clear they also want New York Times journalists charged under the Espionage Act for their recent stories on President Obama's 'Kill List' and secret U.S. cyberattacks against Iran.
YouTube recently unveiled a new face blurring tool that lets users choose to conceal every face in a video they have uploaded. This is a commendable step towards fostering anonymous speech on the Internet.
EFF has joined a diverse collection groups signing on to a brief prepared by the Competitive Enterprise Institute to support the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in its call for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to conduct a legally required notice-and-comment rulemaking for its "advanced imaging" scanners.
The U.S. classification system is "dysfunctional" and "clearly lacks the ability to differentiate between trivial information and that which can truly damage our nation's well-being." Those are not the words of EFF, nor any other government transparency advocate, but instead came from the former classification czar himself.
EFF has been among several groups following the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the huge ramifications it would have for the future of the open Internet, access to knowledge, and innovation. One of the most problematic aspects of the TPP's intellectual property chapter as leaked is its proposed language regulating temporary copies. As currently drafted, the related provision creates chilling effects not just on how we behave online, but on the basic ability for people and companies to use and create on the Web.
At the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas last week, Javier Galbally revealed that it's possible to spoof a biometric iris scanning system using synthetic images derived from real irises. The Madrid-based security researcher's talk is timely, coming on the heels of a July 23 Israeli Supreme Court hearing where the potential vulnerabilities of a proposed governmental biometric database drove the debate.
The Mexican government shelled out $4.6 billion pesos ($355 million USD) to expand Mexican domestic surveillance equipment over the past year, a set of newly leaked documents has revealed. According to a July 16 press report, the Secretariat of National Defense (Sedena) -- the body that oversees Mexico’s Army and Air Force -- awarded five surveillance contracts that were for the procurement of devices capable of intercepting mobile phone and online communications.
A heated debate is underway about whether Israel's Interior Ministry will move ahead with the creation of a governmental biometric database containing digital fingerprints and facial photographs, which would be linked to "smart" national ID cards. At the heart of the issue is a major concern about privacy: Aggregated personal information invites security breaches, and large databases of biometric information can be honeypots of sensitive data vulnerable to exploitation.
Earlier this month, the 47 member states of the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) passed a landmark Resolution (A/HRC/20/L.13) to include the "promotion, protection, and enjoyment of human rights on the Internet." The Resolution, which was presented by Sweden, was backed by more than 70 countries in all, both members and non-members of the HRC.
Professor Colleen Chien of Santa Clara University School of Law launched a survey on the impact of patent demands, especially on small businesses and entrepreneurs. Help her study the true effects of the patent system.
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The Humble Bundle folks are back with the new Humble Music Bundle, a package of albums from artists like They Might Be Giants and Jonathan Coulton. Pay what you want for DRM-free songs, and allot some of your money to support EFF.
EFF's Senior Staff Attorney Lee Tien will speak on a panel about the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and threats to civil liberties. The panel is organized by the San Francisco 99% Coalition. July 31, 2012
Long Now and the Electronic Frontier Foundation bring Cory Doctorow to San Francisco for a glimpse into the future of computing and the increasing fight for control over our freedom both online and offline. The talk is at the Novellus Theater in San Francisco at 7:30 pm. July 31, 2012
San Francisco, CA
EFF's activism director Rainey Reitman will discuss how civil liberties online are under attack and how we can defend them at Campus Party in Berlin. Rainey will be speaking at three events at Campus Party: "Defending the Free and Uncensored Internet" on the Free Software Stage, a roundtable discussion on privacy, and a workshop on "How to Change the World Through Your Blog." August 21-26, 2012
The updated policy also contains general language that allows for third-party hosting providers. Lastly, we specifically include both donors and website visitors as those whose information we do not sell or rent under any circumstances, or share without prior consent.
After blogging about the NSA's dark history of privacy breaches, Pieter Montolieu asked on our Facebook page, "Why can't we just put you in charge already?" We're flattered, but watching the watchmen is a big enough job already.