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Podcast Episode: AI in Kitopia

New technologies are radically advancing our freedoms, but they are also enabling unparalleled invasions of privacy. National and international laws have yet to catch up with the evolving need for privacy that comes with new digital technologies. Respect for individuals' autonomy, anonymous speech, and the right to free association must be balanced against legitimate concerns like law enforcement. EFF fights in the courts and Congress to maintain your privacy rights in the digital world, and works with partners around the globe to support the development of privacy-protecting technologies.

Your cell phone helps you keep in touch with friends and family, but it also makes it easier for the government to track your location.

Your Web searches about sensitive medical information might seem a secret between you and your search engine, but companies like Google are creating a treasure trove of personal information by logging your online activities, and making it potentially available to any party wielding enough cash or a subpoena.

And the next time you try to board a plane, watch out—you might be turned away after being mistakenly placed on a government watch list, or be forced to open your email in the security line.

Several governments have also chosen to use malware to engage in extra-legal spying or system sabotage for dissidents or non-citizens, all in the name of “national security.”

As privacy needs evolve, so too should our regulatory regimes. National governments must put legal checks in place to prevent abuse of state powers, and international bodies need to consider how a changing technological environment shapes security agencies’ best practices. Above all, we need to respect the rights of autonomy, anonymity, association, and expression that privacy makes possible, while also taking into account legitimate law enforcement concerns.

Read our work on privacy issues below, and join EFF to help support our efforts.

For information about the law and technology of government surveillance in the United States check out EFF's Surveillance Self-Defense project.

Privacy Highlights

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Digital Privacy at the U.S. Border: Protecting the Data On Your Devices and In the Cloud

Digital Privacy at the U.S. Border:Protecting the Data On Your Devices and In the Cloudby Sophia Cope, Amul Kalia, Seth Schoen, and Adam SchwartzDownload the report as a PDF.EXECUTIVE SUMMARYأفادت الحكومة الأمريكية أن عدد حالات تفحص المحتويات الالكترونية على الحدود قد إزداد بمقدار خمسة أضعاف خلال سنة واحدة فقط،...

NSA Spying

The US government, with assistance from major telecommunications carriers including AT&T, has engaged in massive, illegal dragnet surveillance of the domestic communications and communications records of millions of ordinary Americans since at least 2001. Since this was first reported on by the press and discovered by the public in late...

Privacy Updates

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In Final Talks on Proposed UN Cybercrime Treaty, EFF Calls on Delegates to Incorporate Protections Against Spying and Restrict Overcriminalization or Reject Convention

Update: Delegates at the concluding negotiating session failed to reach consensus on human rights protections, government surveillance, and other key issues. The session was suspended Feb. 8 without a final draft text. Delegates will resume talks at a later day with a view to concluding their work and providing a...

A cityscape with surveillance

旧金山:呼吁对提案 E (Proposition E) 投反对票,以阻止警方对公众进行危险的监控技术测试

即将于 2024 年 3 月 5 日举行的投票表决可能对旧金山选民的隐私权和公民自由带来威胁。如果提案 E 得到通过,我们可以预见旧金山警察局 (SFPD) 将在一整年的时间内随时对公众使用未经测试且具有潜在危险的技术,而且无需接受任何监督。我们如何知道这一点?因为提案内容明确允许这一行为,而且市政府内支持该项措施的人士也公开发表了声明。 城市监督委员会 (Board of Supervisors) 在 2023 年 11 月 13 日的会议上对提案 E 展开讨论时,市政府雇员表示新的规定将“授权警察局对新技术进行为期一年的试验,以查看实际运行情况。” 如果您想亲眼目睹实况,请观看上方视频他们还应该知道这些技术将对社区带来怎样的影响,而不是采取先部署后提问的方法…任何捍卫隐私权和公民自由的人士都应该认为这项声明非常可怕。 警方应该在城市街道展开部署之前了解这些技术如何运作(或者它们是否真的有效)。他们还应该知道这些技术将对社区带来怎样的影响,而不是采取先部署后提问的方法——这几乎无疑会侵害公民权利。这项投票议案可能会削弱旧金山 2019 颁布的标志性监控条例,该条例规定包括警察局在内的市政机构在购买或部署新的监控技术之前应先征得民选机构“城市监督委员会 (Board of Supervision)”的同意。市政机构还必须向公众提供一份报告,详细说明技术的使用方式。这种做法很有必要,因为不仅可以确保在这座城市生活或工作的人们有权对用于维护社区治安的监控技术表达意见,而且无论以什么标准衡量,这都是符合常识的合理规定。 然而,这次新的投票表决却试图破坏 2019 年监控条例的规定。议案中说明“……警察局可以购买和/或使用监控技术,只需在使用或购买后一年内向城市监督委员会提交一份《监控技术政策》并得到合法批准,而且可以在一年期结束后继续使用监控技术,除非城市监督委员会通过颁布法规反对该政策……”换言之,警方事实上可以在一整年内按照其意愿部署任何新的监控技术,而且无需接受任何监督、问责、透明度要求,或任何形式上的民主控制。这项投票议案可能会将旧金山变成警方的实验室,放任警方对居民和游客使用大部分未经验证的危险技术,而无需顾虑批评或反对。这项投票议案可能会将旧金山变成警方的实验室,放任警方对居民和游客使用大部分未经验证的危险技术,而无需顾虑批评或反对。这意味着警方在一年内可以听从错误且充满种族主义的算法摆布。在这一年内,警方很可能会与那些大量收购数以百万手机地理定位数据并进行数据筛选的企业签订合同。破坏重要的监督机制,让警察在没有民主制衡的情况下行事,并不会让这座城市更加安全。鉴于当地警方目前拥有的一切近乎科幻小说一般、令人难以置信的危险监控技术,我们必须确保这些所谓的药物(监控)最终不会对患者(民众)造成更多伤害。然而,提案 E 一旦通过,警方会将已经被边缘化、过度监控的社区暴露于新一代更不负责任的监控技术的影响之下,上述担忧必定会变成现实。 因此,请告知您的朋友。告知您的家人。大声疾呼,奔走相告。当您乘坐 MUNI 或 BART 地铁时,和身边的陌生人谈论这件事。我们务必组织联合整个社区,在 2024 年 3...


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