• 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 7, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

These 13 House Reps sponsored a bill to legalize mass surveillance on Americans and called it the USA Liberty Act

On October 6th, House Representative Goodlatte and 12 other Representatives proposed the USA Liberty Act (H.R. 3989) – which would renew the currently active NSA’s mass surveillance programs. We’ve known for the better part of a year that the Trump Administration intended to renew Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which would … Continue reading “These 13 House Reps sponsored a bill to legalize mass surveillance on Americans and called it the USA Liberty Act”

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  • Jul 14, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Security,

New Dutch law allows law enforcement to digitally wiretap your friends and family to get to you

This past Wednesday, the Netherlands Senate passed a new surveillance and data mining law that will go into effect on January 1st, 2018. The new law (available in Dutch) expands the government’s targeted and mass surveillance powers and were first introduced in 2015. The Dutch government will soon have expanded surveillance powers, allowing authorities to force … Continue reading “New Dutch law allows law enforcement to digitally wiretap your friends and family to get to you”

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  • May 4, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Security,

UK government seeks expansion of mass surveillance “technical capabilities” via the Investigatory Powers Act

The UK government is seeking an expansion to their mass surveillance powers on the Internet. The plans were leaked and released by the Open Rights Group. The draft rules were only officially circulated to a short list of companies, mostly telecommunication companies and internet service providers (ISPs) according to The Register. The proposed bulk surveillance rules will force telecoms … Continue reading “UK government seeks expansion of mass surveillance “technical capabilities” via the Investigatory Powers Act”

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  • Apr 12, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

4/13 is Australia’s National Get a VPN Day as ISPs and telecoms officially begin metadata retention

April 13th, 2017 is now “National Get a VPN” Day for the entire country of Australia. In March 2015, Australia passed the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Bill (info). The law mandates metadata retention by Australian internet service providers (ISPs) and telecommunication companies (known as carrier service providers in Australia). Australians scramble to get a VPN … Continue reading “4/13 is Australia’s National Get a VPN Day as ISPs and telecoms officially begin metadata retention”

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  • Jan 3, 2017
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy,

Despite promises, metadata gathered by Australian mass surveillance may be made available to civil litigators, not just law enforcement

Australia, one of many countries that conducts mass surveillance with mandatory metadata logging laws, is planning to make your private information available in civil proceedings. When Australia initially passed the mandatory logging laws in 2014, government proponents, such as AFP Commissioner Andrew Colvin, emphasized that information was only supposed to be made available for the … Continue reading “Despite promises, metadata gathered by Australian mass surveillance may be made available to civil litigators, not just law enforcement”

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  • Dec 6, 2016
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Security,

Private Internet Access VPN response to Investigatory Powers Act

The United Kingdom has passed a draconian mass surveillance law, the Investigatory Powers Act (IP Act), which will force the collection of UK internet connection records for a whole year. We want to take this opportunity to remind everyone that Private Internet Access doesn’t store traffic logs or connection records of any kind. We are … Continue reading “Private Internet Access VPN response to Investigatory Powers Act”

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  • Oct 26, 2016
  • Caleb Chen
  • Governments, News, Privacy, Security,

AT&T actually sells leads to DEA and local law enforcement using Project Hemisphere

AT&T has been running a for-profit mass surveillance program, called Project Hemisphere, since 2007. Everybody already knows about AT&T cooperation with NSA mass surveillance metadata database… This is a separate program that allows law enforcement to access all of AT&T’s data at will, even though the information is never handled by law enforcement, which apparently makes … Continue reading “AT&T actually sells leads to DEA and local law enforcement using Project Hemisphere”

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European Supreme Court says “Maybe” to mass surveillance of innocents

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) says that mass surveillance of innocent people may be legal in a preliminary ruling issued today. The ECJ is the highest court in the European Union, and it issues preliminary rulings by a General Advocate about six months ahead of its final ruling. Today’s preliminary ruling allows for mass … Continue reading “European Supreme Court says “Maybe” to mass surveillance of innocents”

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As horrible as Internet surveillance is, the alternative could have been far worse

While the Internet has turned into a global surveillance machine, with only tech-aware and privacy-aware people opting out of the surveillance, it’s important to remember that we could have had something far worse. In the 1990s, the telcos were aggressively pushing for their own version of a packet switched network – and had they won … Continue reading “As horrible as Internet surveillance is, the alternative could have been far worse”

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