The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011, introduced by Rep. Mike Rogers and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, allows companies or the government free rein to bypass existing laws in order to monitor communications, filter content, or potentially even shut down access to online services for "cybersecurity purposes." Companies are encouraged to share data with the government and with one another, and the government can share data in return. The idea is to facilitate detection of and defense against a serious cyber threat, but the language is so broad it could be used as a blunt instrument to attack websites like The Pirate Bay or WikiLeaks. Join EFF in calling on Congress to stop the Rogers cybersecurity bill.
EFF has previously reported on two instances of pro-Syrian-government malware targeting Syrian activists through links sent in chats and emails. Now we've seen new Windows malware dropped by a fake YouTube site hosting Syrian opposition videos. The fake YouTube page attacks users in two ways: it requires you to enter your YouTube login credentials in order to leave comments, and it installs malware disguised as an Adobe Flash Player update.
Last week was Sunshine Week, a national celebration of open government and freedom of information. In years past, the Obama administration has been taken to task for reversing early promises on transparency. Has it improved?
During the past year, EFF's FOIA team filed over 30 different FOIA requests to dozens of federal agencies, seeking information on the government's use of technology and its effect on civil liberties. The documents we've received shed new light on government activities ranging from law enforcement guides for getting information from social networking sites to abuse of federal surveillance laws.
When the government doesn't respond to our FOIA requests, we are sometimes forced to file suit: in 2011, we filed three new lawsuits, and are currently litigating four others, stemming from the government's failure to release the records we've requested. We take a look at suits we filed in the last year and the information we hope they'll provide, from secret interpretations of the PATRIOT Act to drones to surveillance.
The federal district court in Nevada has issued a declaratory judgment that makes is harder for copyright holders to file lawsuits over excerpts of material and burden online forums and their users with nuisance lawsuits. The judgment -- part of the lawsuit avalanche started by copyright troll Righthaven -- found that Democratic Underground did not infringe the copyright in a Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper article when a user of the online political forum posted a five-sentence excerpt with a link back to the newspaper's website.
Like many operating systems, Ubuntu stores information about how you use your computer. This is often convenient because it helps you quickly open recently used documents or search recently used folders, but it also means that anyone with access to your computer can learn these things as well. In an upcoming release, Ubuntu is introducing operating system-wide privacy settings that let you delete portions of your activity log, disable logging for specific types of files and applications, or disable activity logging altogether.
On the heels of President Obama's recent introduction of a Privacy Bill of Rights, the Digital Advertising Alliance has agreed to support widespread implementation of Do Not Track browser headers. But Facebook remains a conspicuous absence from the Do Not Track discussions. As a company that tracks millions of users around the web, Facebook needs to follow in the footsteps of Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, and others by committing to respect user choice.
The French National Assembly has passed a law proposing the creation of a new biometric ID card for French citizens with the justification of combating "identity fraud." More than 45 million individuals in France will have their fingerprints and digitized faces stored in what would be the largest biometric database in the country. Now more than 200 members of the French Parliament have challenged its compatibility with Europeans' fundamental rights framework, including the right to privacy and the presumption of innocence.
Pakistan's plans for national censorship program got an update, a pro-democracy activist in United Arab Emirates was arrested for tweets, Saudi journalist Hamza Kashgari was scheduled to be released, there were new revelations on China's censorship methods, and much more.
James Bamford for Wired Magazine gives a report on the NSA's massive new Bluffdale, Utah spy center and a detailed and well-sourced account of just how much spying the NSA is doing on pretty much all communications.
President Barack Obama wants companies like Google and Facebook to reform their privacy practices. But that's not stopping his reelection campaign from tapping the rich data Internet companies hold on millions of potential voters.
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EFF was an early adopter of Drupal and has successfully migrated and re-launched our website on Drupal7. We've also moved from the proprietary advocacy/CRM service known as Convio into a Drupal-powered CiviCRM donation and CRM system. Micah Lee, EFF's Web Developer, will be presenting. March 23, 2012 Denver, CO
CiviCon is the annual event bringing together the people who use, develop, design and implement CiviCRM. The conference will have great speakers, including EFF's Micah Lee and Kellie Brownell as keynote. April 2, 2012 San Francisco, CA
Jillian York, EFF's Director of International Freedom of Expression, joins a moderated panel disucssion "The Revolution Will Be Tweeted: Social Media and Free Speech in the Middle East," examining the impact of social media on democracy movements in the Middle East and around the world. April 3-4, 2012 Morgantown, PA