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EFFector - Volume 9, Issue 5 - Big Day for Crypto: New Bill, New Campaign, New Coalition


EFFector - Volume 9, Issue 5 - Big Day for Crypto: New Bill, New Campaign, New Coalition

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EFFector Online Volume 09 No. 05        May 2, 1996
A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation        ISSN 1062-9424


Big Day for Crypto: New Bill, New Campaign, New Coalition
Sen. Leahy Uses PGP in Open Letter to the Net on Crypto
 New EFF Organizational Memberships
 Georgia Online Trademark Law Passed
Upcoming Events
Quote of the Day
What YOU Can Do

* See or, /pub/Alerts/ for more
information on current EFF activities and online activism alerts! *


Subject: Big Day for Crypto: New Bill, New Campaign, New Coalition

For Immediate Release                                         May 2, 1996

      EFF Helps Plant Seeds of 'Golden Key' Grassroots Campaign
                 For Secure Electronic Communications

Electronic Frontier Foundation             Contact: Lori Fena, Exec. Dir.
                                                         +1 (415)436-9333 

Using the symbols of a key and an envelope, the Electronic Frontier 
Foundation (EFF), along with many other organizations concerned with the 
security of electronic communication, is helping to spread the word about 
a new international grassroots campaign promoting online privacy. The 
purpose of the "Golden Key" Campaign for Private Communications Online is 
to urge the online community, computer industry, government agencies and 
lawmakers to support the protection of privacy and security on the 
rapidly growing Internet

* About the Golden Key Campaign for Private & Secure Communications Online

Both the key and the envelope symbolize historic means for 
communicating privately and protecting personal information. Today, 
encryption tools provide this privacy in the electronic world.

"The importance of privacy as a common good in a society which 
values democracy is not new," said Lori Fena, executive director of EFF. 
"For the same reasons you would not send a love letter or your credit 
card number through the mail on the back of a post card, we need to 
ensure that encryption -- the electronic version of an envelope -- 
remains widely available and truly useful."

The Golden Key Campaign is being launched to raise awareness and 
support for the preservation of the right to communicate privately and 
the availability of new techniques which make it possible.

Privacy, a fundamental human right, has been affirmed by the U.S. 
Supreme Court, the constitutions and laws of many countries, and the 
United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Privacy must be 
preserved as we move from paper to electronic communications.

EFF is encouraging members of the online community to display the 
Golden Key logo wherever possible and help educate legislators in the 
U.S. and abroad about the importance of secure online communication. The 
logo may be freely obtained and redistributed by downloading any one of 
the several versions available on EFF's Golden Key site, at - and please link your Golden Key
encryption freedom icon to this URL or one of the ones mentioned below 
(the IPC home page or the Crypto Policy Resource Page).

* Recent Events Highlight Importance of Electronic Encryption

While security and privacy of communication is an age-old value, 
recent events in the courts and U.S. Congress (and elsewhere) have brought 
new attention to the issue.

Just today, U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns, R-MT, introduced legislation that 
would relax export controls on commercial & public domain products 
containing technologies for privacy, such as encryption. Hearings on the 
Burns bill are expected to take place in early June. The proposal has 
already gathered support from a bipartisan coalition in Congress.
The name of the legislation is the "Promotion of Commerce Online in the 
Digital Era (Pro-CODE) Act of 1996".  Bill number: S. 1786.

Two other similar bills, the "Encrypted Communication Privacy 
Act of 1996 (ECPA96)" (S. 1587) and the "Security And Freedom through 
Encryption (SAFE) Act of 1996" (H.R. 3011), were introduced March 5, by Sen. 
Patrick Leahy, D-VT, and Rep. Robert Goodlatte, R-VA, respectively.
The texts of these bills and various statements regarding them can be
found at

Electronic communication security and export of encryption has 
also been an important issue in Federal courts recently. In a landmark 
decision two weeks ago, a U.S. District Judge in San Francisco denied the 
government's motion to dismiss mathematician Daniel Bernstein's case in 
which he seeks the ability to freely export his encryption algorithm, 
"Snuffle." The decision was the first time that a U.S. court recognized 
software as Constitutionally protected speech.  See for more info.

On the down side, a case in some ways similar to Bernstein's - the Phil 
Karn case - was dismissed with a largely opposite ruling, in a different 
district.  That dismissal is on appeal.  And the State Department is even 
sending legal threat letters to authors of software that does not include 
encryption capabilities, but only software "hooks" to allow encryption 
functions to be added.  Crypto export overhaul could not come a moment 

Outside the US: France, Beligium, Russia and other coutries have cracked 
down on even the use of encryption, while the United Kingdom is a step 
closer to imposing an crypto key "escrow" system, in which all users' 
private keys are duplicated and held by a third party or the government
itself, for the conveniece of law enforcement and intelligence agents.  
For more information see:

Users and organizations abroad are urged to create their own Golden Key 
resource pages, to inform users in their own areas about crypto-privacy 
action on the local front.

* EFF Joins EPIC, CDT, VTW & Others in Forming Internet Privacy Coalition

The Internet Privacy Coalition (IPC) is the first attempt to bring 
together a broad base of companies, cryptographers and public interest 
organizations around the central goals of promoting privacy and security 
on the Internet and urging relaxation of export controls on encryption tools.
The coalition is maintaining a web page at

The site will serve as a central depository for information and discussion
regarding online encryption and secure electronic communication.  There 
is also a sister site that will be of interest, whether you are new to 
the topic, or an active participant in the debate: the Encryption Policy 
Resource Page at

* The Electronic Frontier Foundation

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is a nonprofit public 
interest organization devoted to the protection of online privacy and 
free expression. EFF was founded in 1990, and is based in San Francisco, 
California. It maintains an archive of information on privacy and 
cryptography at

EFF has been involved for several years with the protection of 
secure and private electronic communication.  In 1993-4, EFF and other 
civil liberties organizations successfully opposed implementation of the 
U.S. Administration's "Clipper" or "Skipjack" system - hardware 
encryption for voice and data communications in which all encryption keys 
are held by government for the convenience of law enforcement and 
intelligence agencies. 

In 1994, EFF helped ensure that crypto export became a major 
legislative topic, laying the groundwork for eventual liberalization of 
the ITARs. In 1994 and 1995 EFF opposed implementation of and helped 
defeat funding for the FBI's "Digital Telephony" scheme, in which up to 
one person on every city block could be simultaneously wiretapped in some 


Subject: Sen. Leahy Uses PGP in Open Letter to the Net on Crypto

[Note: The URL given below for the Senator's homepage appears to have 
changed to or (both of these work.)  

This letter was sent by Sen. Leahy today, to various organizations and 
mailing list forums, including EFF's "ACTION" list.]

Date: Thu, 02 May 96 12:02:02 EST
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Letter From Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) On Encryption
To: (action mailing list)

     Please post where appropriate


May 2, 1996

Dear Friends:

Today, a bipartisan group of Senators has joined me in supporting
legislation to encourage the development and use of strong,
privacy-enhancing technologies for the Internet by rolling back
the out-dated restrictions on the export of strong cryptography.

In an effort to demonstrate one of the more practical uses of
encryption technology (and so that you all know this message
actually came from me), I have signed this message using a
digital signature generated by the popular encryption program
PGP.  I am proud to be the first member of Congress to utilize
encryption and digital signatures to post a message to the

As a fellow Internet user, I care deeply about protecting
individual privacy and encouraging the development of the Net as
a secure and trusted communications medium.  I do not need to
tell you that current export restrictions only allow American
companies to export primarily weak encryption technology.  The
current strength of encryption the U.S. government will allow out
of the country is so weak that, according to a January 1996 study
conducted by world-renowned cryptographers, a pedestrian hacker
can crack the codes in a matter of hours!  A foreign intelligence
agency can crack the current 40-bit codes in seconds.

Perhaps more importantly, the increasing use of the Internet and
similar interactive communications technologies by Americans to
obtain critical medical services, to conduct business, to be
entertained and communicate with their friends, raises special
concerns about the privacy and confidentiality of those
communications.  I have long been concerned about these issues,
and have worked over the past decade to protect privacy and
security for our wire and electronic communications.  Encryption
technology provides an effective way to ensure that only the
people we choose can read our communications.

I have read horror stories sent to me over the Internet about how
human rights groups in the Balkans have had their computers
confiscated during raids by security police seeking to find out
the identities of people who have complained about abuses. 
Thanks to PGP, the encrypted files were undecipherable by the
police and the names of the people who entrusted their lives to
the human rights groups were safe.

The new bill, called the "Promotion of Commerce On-Line in the
Digital Era (PRO-CODE) Act of 1996," would:

     o    bar any government-mandated use of any particular
     encryption system, including key escrow systems and affirm
     the right of American citizens to use whatever form of
     encryption they choose domestically;

     o    loosen export restrictions on encryption products so
     that American companies are able to export any generally
     available or mass market encryption products without
     obtaining government approval; and

     o    limit the authority of the federal government to set
     standards for encryption products used by businesses and
     individuals, particularly standards which result in products
     with limited key lengths and key escrow.

This is the second encryption bill I have introduced with Senator
Burns and other congressional colleagues this year. Both bills
call for an overhaul of this country's export restrictions on
encryption, and, if enacted, would quickly result in the
widespread availability of strong, privacy protecting
technologies. Both bills also prohibit a government-mandated key
escrow encryption system.  While PRO-CODE would limit the
authority of the Commerce Department to set encryption standards
for use by private individuals and businesses, the first bill we
introduced, called the "Encrypted Communications Privacy Act",
S.1587, would set up stringent procedures for law enforcement to
follow to obtain decoding keys or decryption assistance to read
the plaintext of encrypted communications obtained under court
order or other lawful process.

It is clear that the current policy towards encryption exports is
hopelessly outdated, and fails to account for the real needs of
individuals and businesses in the global marketplace.  Encryption
expert Matt Blaze, in a recent letter to me, noted that current
U.S. regulations governing the use and export of encryption are
having a "deleterious effect ... on our country's ability to
develop a reliable and trustworthy information infrastructure." 
The time is right for Congress to take steps to put our national
encryption policy on the right course.

I am looking forward to hearing from you on this important issue.
Throughout the course of the recent debate on the Communications
Decency Act, the input from Internet users was very valuable to
me and some of my Senate colleagues.

You can find out more about the issue at my World Wide Web home
page ( and at the Encryption Policy
Resource Page ( Over the coming months, I
look forward to the help of the Net community in convincing other
Members of Congress and the Administration of the need to reform
our nation's cryptography policy.


Patrick Leahy
United States Senator

Version: 2.6.2



Subject: NewsNybbles

* New EFF Organizational Memberships

EFF now has two new membership categories:
  - Nonprofit/Educational/Library - $100/year 
    Open to any not-for-profit NGO, or similar organization (e.g. in 
    countries that don't have official non-profit categories, or 
    organizations denied such status for political reasons 
    by hostile governments). Also open to schools and to libraries.

  - Corporate - $5000
    Please pledge your support, and help us make a difference!  This 
    category is for the large and small companies alike. If you'd like to 
    help out with larger contributions, donation of services or equipment, or
    with project cooperation, please contact us at or 
    +1 415 436 9333 (voice), +1 415 436 9993 (fax).

For an EFF membership for (for fax, snail mail, email or upload), please see:, /pub/EFF/join.eff (login: anonymous)   or, path: 1/EFF/join.eff

* Georgia Online Trademark Law Passed

The Georgia "Net Police" bill reported on last issue was signed into law, 
despite objections from the public, the industry, and civil liberties 
organizations.  The bill poses many potential free speech and privacy 
threats due to its poor wording.

A new bill to repeal this law has been introduced in the state legislature.
(No online text available as of yet).

BellSouth denies being behind the legislation, despite suggestions to 
the contrary from at least one Georgia State Representative.  Whatever 
really went on behind closed doors, BellSouth did have this to say about 
the bill:
       " is probably overkill and unduly complicating to make acts of
       trademark infringement, misrepresentation and passing off on the
       Internet a crime under state law. There is already ample
       legislation and common law in place to effectuate the intent of
       this law."


Upcoming Events

This schedule lists EFF events, and those we feel might be of interest to
our members.  EFF events (those sponsored by us or featuring an EFF speaker)
are marked with a "*" instead of a "-" after the date.  Simlarly, government
events (such as deadlines for comments on reports or testimony submission,
or conferences at which government representatives are speaking) are marked
with "!" in place of the "-" ("!?" means a govt. speaker may appear, but
we don't know for certain yet.)  And likewise, "+" in place of "-"
indicates a non-USA event.  If it's a foreign EFF event with govt. people,
it'll be "*!+" instead of "-".  You get the idea.

The latest version of the full EFF calendar is available from:

ftp:, /pub/EFF/calendar.eff
gopher:, 1/EFF, calendar.eff

May   3 + Symposium: "The Law of Information Superhighways and
          Multimedia," sponsored by the Eurpoean Lawyers Union, Monaco.

          PROJECTIONS," sponsored by the MIT Research Program on
          Communication Policy; 1:00-5:30pm, Massachusetts Institute of
          Technology, MIT Room 9-15, Cambridge, MA.
          Contact: +1 253 0108

May   4 - ACLU forum on Censorship and the Internet User; Souls Unitarian
          Church, 4500 Warwick, Kansas City, MO; featuring Laura Murphy,
          Executive Director of ACLU's national office in Washington, D.C.
          Contact: +1 816 756 3113

       -  Internet and Journalism Conference, sponsored by the Detroit
          Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists; 9am-3:30pm,
          Dearborn Inn & Marriott Hotel, 20301 Oakwood, Dearborn, MI.
          Contact: +1 313 336 1503

May  6-
     7 -  Automated Medical Payments Conference; San Francisco, CA.
          Contact: +1 312 983 6133

May  6-
     8  - IEEE/IACR Security & Privacy Symposium; Oakland, Calif.
          Deadline for submissions: Nov. 6, 1995.
          Contact: +1 503 725 5842 (voice), +1 503 725 3211 (fax)
          FTP:, /pub/SP96/

May  6-
     10 + 5th International WWW Conference; Paris, France.

May  7  - National Library Legislative Day, sponsored by the District of
          Columbia Library Association and the American Library
          Association; Washington, DC.
          Contact: Mary Costible +1 202 628 8410

May  9  - HotWired Electronic Frontiers Forum; online event, 7pm PST
          "speak"ers will include Jerod Pore of Scamizdat. Users can
          participate via either WWW ( or
          telnet (chat.wired.com2428).

May  9-
     11 + Visions of Privacy for the 21st Century: A Search for Solutions;
          Victoria, BC, Canada.

May  10 *! Last day in court on appellate-level EFF/CDT/VTW/CIEC/ACLU/ALA
          Communications Decency Act legal challenge (ACLU & ALA, et al. v.
          Reno & Dept. of Justice, merged case).  Next stop: the Supreme
          Court!  Help pack the Philadelphia Courtroom!
          Contact: ACLU, +1 212 944 9800
          Email: (update infobot)

        - New Jersey Intercampus Network presents "Telecommunications Act
          of 1996: Should we? Can we? Must we?"; Stevens Institute of
          Technology, Hoboken, NJ.
          Contact: Kraig Roajphlastein, +1 201 216 5483

        - Workshop on Medical Records Privacy, sponsored by the Consumer
          Project on Technology, Washington, D.C.
          Contact: Manon Ress, +1 202 387 8030

May  10-
     12 - Alliance for Community Media/Northeast Region and Community
          Technology Centers Network's Spring 1996 regional conference:
          "Public Access Goes Digital - Building Out Communities in the
          Information Age"; Champlain College, Burlington, VT.
          Contact: Marisa Vitielo, +1 802 862 1645

May  14-
     17 - Community Networking '96 Conference: "Bringing People Together";
          Taos, NM

May  15 ! Telecommunication and Education National Issues Forum, sponsored
          by the Douglass Policy Institute; Washington Court Hotel;
          Washington, D.C.
          Contact: +1 202 488 8458
          Fax: +1 202 484 7029
May  15-
     17 - 4th CICNet Conference on Datafication; Marshall University,
          Huntington, West Virginia. Proposals due by "mid December" '95.
          Contact: +1 708 866 804 (voice)

May  16 - HotWired Electronic Frontiers Forum; online event, 7pm PST
          "speak"ers will include Sameer Parekh of Community Connection.
          Users can participate via either WWW (
          or telnet ( 2428).

May  16-
     17 - CLE/University of Texas Law School presents, "Communicating and
          Conducting Business Online"; Four Seasons Hotel, Austin, TX
          Contact: +1 512 475 6700
          Fax: +1 512 475 6876

May  20-
     21 ! Internet Privacy and Security Workshop, sponsored by the
          Privacy and Security Working Group of he Federal Networking Council
          and the Research Program on Communications Policy Center for
          Technology, Policy, and Industrial Development at Massachusetts
          Institute of Technology; Haystack Observatory, Boston, MA.
          Deadline for abstracts: April 14.
          Contact: Internet Security and Privacy Workshop c/o Joseph
          Reagle, Research Program on Communications Policy, MIT, One
          Amherst St. (E40-218), Cambridge, MA 02139
          Voice: +1 617 253 4138
          Fax: +1 617 253 7326

May  20-
     22 - The Digital Revolution: Assessing the Impact on Business,
          Education and Social Structures, and ASIS Annual Meeting; San
          Diego, CA. Notification of intent to submit a paper must be
          received by November 15, 1995. [NOTE! We've also seen the date
          given as May 18-22, so you should ask what the correct dates are.]

May  23 - HotWired Electronic Frontiers Forum; online event, 7pm PST
          "speak"ers will include Gary Chapman.
          Users can participate via either WWW (
          or telnet ( 2428).

May  28-
     31 - Harvard Conference on the Internet and Society, Harvard
          University, Cambridge, MA.
          Contact: +1 617 432 1NET

May  29-
     31 - 18th Annual Meeting of the Society for Scholarly Publishing:
          Assessing the Reality of New Markets and New Media; Minneapolis
          Hilton and Towers, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
          Contact: 303-422-3914
          Fax: 303-422-8894

May  30-
     31 - "Networked Information: Challenges and Solutions," sponsored by
          CAUSE and the Coalition for Networked Information, University of
          Pennsylvania, Phialdephia, PA.
          Contact: +1 303 939 0315


Subject: Quote of the Day
"This court can find no meaningful difference between computer language,
particularly high-level [programming] languages..., and German or
French...Whether source code and object code are functional is
immaterial to the analysis at this stage. Contrary to [government]
defendants' suggestion, the functionality of a language does not make it
any less like speech...Defendants argue in their reply that a
description of software in English informs the intellect but source code
actually allows someone to encrypt data. Defendants appear to insist
that the higher the utility value of speech the less like speech it is.
An extension of that argument assumes that once language allows one to
actually do something, like play music or make lasagne, the language is
no longer speech. The logic of this proposition is dubious at best. Its
support in First Amendment law is nonexistent."

  - Federal District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel, decision rejecting government
    motion to dismiss, _Bernstein_v._US_Dept._of_State_, Apr. 15, 1996

Find yourself wondering if your privacy and freedom of speech are safe 
when bills to censor the Internet are swimming about in a sea of of 
surveillance legislation and anti-terrorism hysteria?  Worried that in 
the rush to make us secure from ourselves that our government 
representatives may deprive us of our essential civil liberties? 
Concerned that legislative efforts nominally to "protect children" will 
actually censor all communications down to only content suitable for 
the playground?  Alarmed by commercial and religious organizations abusing
the judicial and legislative processes to stifle satire, dissent and 

Join EFF!

Even if you don't live in the U.S., the anti-Internet hysteria will soon 
be visiting a legislative body near you.  If it hasn't already.


Subject: What YOU Can Do

* The Communications Decency Act & Other Censorship Legislation

The Communications Decency Act and similar legislation pose serious 
threats to freedom of expression online, and to the livelihoods of system 
operators.  The legislation also undermines several crucial privacy 

Business/industry persons concerned should alert their corporate govt.
affairs office and/or legal counsel.  Everyone should write to their own
Representatives and Senators, letting them know that such abuses of 
public trust will not be tolerated, that legislators who vote against
your free speech rights will be voted against by you in the next elections.

Join in the Blue Ribbon Campaign - see


Support the EFF Cyberspace Legal Defense Fund:

For more information on what you can do to help stop this and other 
dangerous legislation, see:, /pub/Alerts/, 1/Alerts

If you do not have full internet access (e.g. WWW), send your request
for information to

censorious legislation is turning up at the US state and non-US 
national levels.  Don't let it sneak by you - or by the online activism 
community. Without locals on the look out, it's very difficult for the 
Net civil liberties community to keep track of what's happening locally 
as well as globally.

* New Crypto-Privacy Legislation

Urge your Represenatitives to support the Pro-CODE crypto export bill 
(and to fix the few remaining bugs in it).  Join in the Golden Key Campaign!
for more info.

* Digital Telephony/Comms. Assistance to Law Enforcement Act

The FBI has been seeking both funding for the DT/CALEA wiretapping 
provisions, and preparing to require that staggering numbers of citizens be 
simultaneously wiretappable.  

To oppose the funding, write to your own Senators and Representatives 
urging them to vote against any appropriations for wiretapping. 

We are aware of no major action on this threat at present, but keep your
eyes peeled. It will be back.

* Anti-Terrorism Bills

Several bills threatening your privacy and free speech have been introduced
recently.  One passed, but none of the rest them are close to passage at 
this very moment - however, this status may change. Urge your 
Congresspersons to oppose these unconstitutional and Big-Brotherish 
bills, which threaten freedom of association, free press, free speech, 
and privacy. One such bill passed last week, stripped of most of the 
more onerous provisions. Keep it up. Write to your legislators: No secret 
trials and deportations, no expansion of wiretapping scope or authority, 
no national or "smart-card" ID systems!

For more information on some of this legislation, see

* The Anti-Electronic Racketeering Act

This bill is unlikely to pass in any form, being very poorly drafted, and 
without much support.  However, the CDA is just as bad and passed with 
flying colors [the jolly roger?] in Congress. It's better to be safe 
than sorry. If you have a few moments to spare, writing to, faxing, or 
calling your Congresspersons to urge opposition to this bill is a good 

* Medical Privacy Legislation

Several bills relating to medical privacy issues are floating in Congress 
right now. Urge your legislators to support only proposals that *truly* 
enhance the medical privacy of citizens.

More information on this legislation will be available at soon.  Bug to make 
it appear there faster. :)

* Find Out Who Your Congresspersons Are

Writing letters to, faxing, and phoning your representatives in Congress
is one very important strategy of activism, and an essential way of
making sure YOUR voice is heard on vital issues.

EFF has lists of the Senate and House with contact information, as well
as lists of Congressional committees. (A House list is included in this
issue of EFFector). These lists are available at:, /pub/Activism/Congress_cmtes/, 1/EFF/Issues/Activism/Congress_cmtes

The full Senate and House lists are senate.list and hr.list, respectively.
Those not in the U.S. should seek out similar information about their
own legislative bodies.  EFF will be happy to archive any such
information provided.

If you are having difficulty determining who your Representatives are,
try contacting your local League of Women Voters, who maintain a great 
deal of legislative information, or consult the free ZIPPER service
that matches Zip Codes to Congressional districts with about 85%
accuracy at:

Computer Currents Interactive has provided Congress contact info, sorted 
by who voted for and against the Communcations Decency Act:

* Join EFF!

You *know* privacy, freedom of speech and ability to make your voice heard
in government are important. You have probably participated in our online
campaigns and forums.  Have you become a member of EFF yet?  The best way to
protect your online rights is to be fully informed and to make your
opinions heard.  EFF members are informed and are making a difference.  Join
EFF today!

For EFF membership info, send queries to, or send any
message to for basic EFF info, and a membership form.



EFFector Online is published by:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation
1550 Bryant St., Suite 725
San Francisco CA 94103 USA
+1 415 436 9333 (voice)
+1 415 436 9993 (fax)
Membership & donations:
Legal services:
General EFF, legal, policy or online resources queries:

Editor: Stanton McCandlish, Online Activist, Webmaster (
Assoc. Editor: Ryan Thornburg, Communications Intern (

This newsletter is printed on 100% recycled electrons.

Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is encouraged.  Signed
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To subscribe to EFFector via email, send message body of "subscribe
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Back issues are available at:, /pub/EFF/Newsletters/EFFector/, 1/EFF/Newsletters/EFFector

To get the latest issue, send any message to (or, and it will be mailed to you automagically.  You can also get
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