EFF in the News
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed a Freedom of Information Act Request with the Department of Transportation (DOT) in April of 2011, but the DOT has yet to respond to the request. This week, according to BuzzBlog and the EFF Deep Links blog, the EFF filed suit against the U.S. DOT to find out who the Federal Aviation Administration, which reports to the DOT, has authorized to control these vehicles.
...EFF Intellectual Property Attorney Corynne McSherry said:
We are glad to see Sen. Leahy is recognizing, at last, some of the serious problems with this legislation. But a half-hearted promise to investigate the consequence of some of the provisions (which should have happened before this bill was even proposed) falls far short of what is needed. And, of course, the DNS filtering provisions represent only some of the fundamental flaws in PIPA. This bill, and its House counterpart, cannot be fixed — they must be killed.
Collegiate Nation urges all college students to visit the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) website where they can easily send an electronic message to their representative in Congress to oppose passage of H.R. 1981. The call to action is titled: "Don't Let Congress Order Internet Companies to Spy on You — Block the Data Retention Mandate." EFF is a donor-funded nonprofit. By mobilizing concerned citizens through its Action Center, EFF beats back bad legislation. In addition to advising policymakers, EFF educates the press and public.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is asking a judge to sanction the lawyers for Astrolabe, who launched a frivolous copyright lawsuit against Arthur David Olson and Paul Eggert. These two researchers maintained the critical Internet timezone database, which is used by servers and PCs and phones all over the world to figure out how to correctly display timestamps and local time.
“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.