Unlike the USA Liberty Act, the USA RIGHTS Act could actually end warrantless surveillance on Americans by the NSA

The end of unwarranted NSA mass surveillance on US citizens may finally be in sight with the (for once) properly named USA RIGHTS Act (Uniting and Strengthening America by Reforming and Improving the Government’s High-Tech Surveillance Act). The USA RIGHTS Act essentially reaffirms American constituional privacy rights in light of continued overreaches of the government’s … Continue reading “Unlike the USA Liberty Act, the USA RIGHTS Act could actually end warrantless surveillance on Americans by the NSA”

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  • Oct 26, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Security,

China is quietly building a national voiceprint database to allow automated speaker recognition

It’s hardly a secret that China conducts massive surveillance of all kinds, as Privacy News Online has reported many times. And yet it seems that the authorities there are still coming up with new ways to check on their 1.4 billion citizens. For example, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has just written a fascinating description of … Continue reading “China is quietly building a national voiceprint database to allow automated speaker recognition”

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  • Oct 24, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

The privacy battle over cross-border data flows just went up a notch

Until the election of Donald Trump last year, multilateral trade deals were a key element of global politics, and affected many aspects of the digital world. Indeed, as the Internet moves ever-closer to the heart of commercial activity, so the importance of digital business has increased, and trade deals have become an important forum for … Continue reading “The privacy battle over cross-border data flows just went up a notch”

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  • Oct 20, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Programming, Security,

Good news on the privacy front: no more EU demands for crypto backdoors

Governments all around the world hate encryption. Unless they are being incredibly cunning by pretending they can’t break strong encryption when they can, this seems to be because crypto really does keep messages and data safe from prying governmental eyes. Banning strong encryption is clearly a non-starter – even the most clueless politician knows by … Continue reading “Good news on the privacy front: no more EU demands for crypto backdoors”

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  • Oct 17, 2017
  • David Meyer
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

British spies are collecting and sharing datasets of people’s social media activities

The British intelligence services have for years quietly claimed the right to collect so-called bulk personal datasets (BPDs) about people, most of whom may be innocent of any crime. The practice was only officially acknowledged in 2015, and last year’s Investigatory Powers Act was – for all its draconian elements – supposed to at least … Continue reading “British spies are collecting and sharing datasets of people’s social media activities”

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  • Oct 16, 2017
  • David Meyer
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Telegram is preparing to fight the Russian authorities over crypto keys

The encrypted messaging app Telegram continues to have a tough time in Russia. Having previously been threatened with blockage for not providing operational information, Telegram has now been hit with a significant fine – and ordered to hand over the encryption keys that led to the fine in the first place. Early on Monday, a … Continue reading “Telegram is preparing to fight the Russian authorities over crypto keys”

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Bizarre: Swedish Minister of Justice shames ISP in public for NOT doing illegal wiretapping

Something quite bizarre just happened on Twitter: the Swedish Minister of Justice went out of his way to lash out at the ISP most known for privacy in Sweden, criticizing the ISP for following the direct orders of the European Court of Justice instead of agreeing to covert illegal wiretapping. The Minister of Justice criticized … Continue reading “Bizarre: Swedish Minister of Justice shames ISP in public for NOT doing illegal wiretapping”

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  • Oct 10, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Brazilian politician: “Freedom of expression is guaranteed, but it cannot be anonymous”

Freedom of expression is not doing well in Brazil. A new law approved last Thursday by the Brazilian Congress allows political parties and candidates to force social media companies to remove any content they feel is defamatory or offensive and posted by an anonymous account. Social media companies would need to provide the full name … Continue reading “Brazilian politician: “Freedom of expression is guaranteed, but it cannot be anonymous””

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Reminder: In government training material, “terrorism” includes peacefully disagreeing with administration policy in public

Governments are still using “terrorism” as a scareword to get any insane law passed – like Britain’s digital book-burning law. But with its other hand, those same governments are expanding the definition of terrorism way beyond what the public could possibly imagine: the government’s own training material says that peaceful street protests in disagreement with … Continue reading “Reminder: In government training material, “terrorism” includes peacefully disagreeing with administration policy in public”

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  • Oct 9, 2017
  • Glyn Moody
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Key transatlantic data flows under threat as US surveillance laws clash once more with EU privacy protections

We wrote recently about clouds gathering over the Privacy Shield framework that governs transatlantic data flows for thousands of US companies. As that post explained, even if the Privacy Shield is struck down by the EU courts, as some believe it will be, there are alternative mechanisms that can ensure the legality of data transfers … Continue reading “Key transatlantic data flows under threat as US surveillance laws clash once more with EU privacy protections”

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