EFF in the News
“Drones give the government and other unmanned aircraft operators a powerful new surveillance tool to gather extensive and intrusive data on Americans’ movements and activities,” said Jennifer Lynch, attorney for the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation, which filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Northern California.
What’s the Department of Transportation hiding? That’s a question the Electronic Frontier Foundation – or EFF – is asking after it field suit against the department for failing to handover records regarding domestic drone flights. EFF filed a Freedom if Information Act request with the DOT back in April of last year to find out who exactly has been authorized to fly unmanned surveillance drones in U.S. airspace and for what reasons.
But for years now they have come to be used more and more by governmental and private entities here on our home turf - not the weaponry, at least not yet - but as a surveillance tool seen as holding both great promise and the potential for great abuse. The Electronic Frontier Foundation, concerned about the latter (as we all should be) is trying to find out even the most basic information about these eyes in the sky. So far, at least, they have been stymied, which is why yesterday the EFF filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the federal government.
A privacy and civil liberties group has been trying to find out who currently has the right to fly drones in the States, but the Federal Aviation Administration — the gov agency with the power to give out drone licenses — has failed to respond to the group’s FOIA request. Now the Electronic Frontier Foundation is suing the Department of Transportation to get its hands on those records.
As the government begins to make policy decisions about the use of these aircraft, the public needs to know more about how and why these drones are being used to surveil United States citizens,” EFF Staff Attorney Jennifer Lynch said in a statement.
The Electronic Frontier foundation launched its landmark Jewel v. National Security Agency lawsuit on behalf of AT&T customers in September 2008, with the goal of stopping the Bush administration’s massive, warrantless dragnet surveillance of American citizens’ communications and communications records.
The EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) is an equally respected non-profit organization tirelessly working to protect the digital rights of businesses and individuals. They not only agree with eWeek, but feel even more strongly about the dangers of this legislation. They have deemed this proposed law, a "massive piece of job-killing Internet regulation. . . This bill cannot be fixed; it must be killed."
"The use of drones in American airspace could dramatically increase the physical tracking of citizens - tracking that can reveal deeply personal details about our private lives," the foundation's attorney Jennifer Lynch in a statement.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, concerned about the latter (as we all should be) is trying to find out even the most basic information about these eyes in the sky. So far, at least, they have been stymied, which is why yesterday the EFF filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the federal government.