EFF in the News
How can startups best lock down customer data? By not having access to it in the first place, suggested Nate Cardozo, senior staff attorney for digital rights organization the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
Asked whether the EFF is seeing more willingness among companies to view the government specifically as an oppositional force, Cardozo said this is especially true for messaging companies, given how much user data these companies can hold.
Wo liegt der Unterschied zwischen Nudes und NooDZ, Nacktheit in der analogen und in der digitalen Welt? Das wollen Jillian York und Addie Wagenknecht bei der re:publica in Berlin besprechen. WIRED hat die beiden Feministinnen vorab getroffen und mit ihnen über Kunst, Zensur, Brüste und den weißen Mann des Silicon Valley gesprochen.
Die Frage, warum Facebook so vorgeht, wie es vorgeht, können die beiden nicht vollumfänglich beantworten - sie haben aber Vermutungen: Neben dem Faktor, dass Facebook ein US-Unternehmen ist - in den USA ist Sex ein größerer Aufreger als etwa Gewaltdarstellungen -, könnte die Regelformulierung auch den Betrieb des Netzwerks erleichtern. Wenn man gar nicht erst zwischen Nacktheit und Pornografie unterscheide, helfe das den Inhalte-Moderatoren, sagt Jillian York, "weil sie diese Unterscheidung nicht mehr vornehmen müssen".
Mark Rumold, a senior staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, called the pushback in those 80 cases "a large and promising increase."
For Rumold, the court's approval rate for targeted wiretaps isn't as troubling as the combination of its secrecy and its judges' legal reasoning.
"What does worry me—and what Americans and foreigners alike should be worried about—is when the FISC approves of surveillance programs that authorize new or particularly intrusive or broad techniques in secret, and by only hearing from one side—the government," he said.
Noting that Congress had introduced some FISC reforms in the 2015 law, he added, "I think the jury's still out on whether those provisions will work effectively, but in principle, they should address some of the biggest concerns I've had with the FISC over the years."
“Net neutrality has been opposed by the same parties who pushed this bill since the beginning,” said Ernesto Falcon, a legislative counsel at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “This is just the newest vehicle.”
“It meant that there was one person in Washington who had a clue about [encryption], which previously it looked like there were zero people in Washington who had a clue about this,” John Gilmore, the founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and one of the leaders of the Cypherpunks group, told Motherboard.
So, after two scuttled courtroom conflicts, will the government shift to a different strategy?
With the broader encryption fight unresolved, the Justice Department remains eager for a solution to what it perceives as the crisis posed by secure communications.
“You can’t be certain, but I would guess they will reconsider,” Andrew Crocker, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told BuzzFeed News. “They might very well use what happened in these cases to say to Congress: ‘We need a legislative solution.’”
The plenary session expanded on some of the themes EFF executive director Cindy Cohn talked about during her keynote address. Cohn has been involved in numerous high-profile court cases against the National Security Agency over its mass surveillance data-collection programs.
A capacity crowd gave Cohn a rousing reception and a standing ovation during her address. “The government’s ongoing quest to make sure no one can have a private conversation online has been going on for 20 years now,” said Cohn. “Liberty depends on people having a zone of privacy whether they’re online or offline.”
Cohn wrapped up her speech with a call to action, encouraging the lawyers in attendance to get involved in the fight. She also urged them to stay vigilant and not to forget about governmental surveillance once Snowden, Apple’s privacy issue and everything involved disappeared from the headlines.
Mark Jaycox, civil liberties legislative lead at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said in an email, "We think it should move forward."
"For many, if not most, Americans, our computers, phones, and other electronic devices contain a catalogue of information as diverse as the thoughts in our mind. These devices, and the information they contain, define our 'familial, political, professional, religious, and sexual associations," staff attorney Kit Walsh of the Electronic Frontier Foundation wrote in an amicus brief, quoting a ruling by Justice Sonia Sotomayor.