Privacy News Update, 7-2 (2 of 2)

hopefully this catches things up. have a great Fourth and emphasize FREEDOM – it’s what the 4th *means*…..!

Featured:

7/2: Springfield hospital among hundreds with multiple privacy complaints

6/30: Uber is going to start tracking how people drive through its app

6/30: Document spells out FBI rules to get journalists’ phone records -article

6/30: US Courts wiretap report: Smartphones impact, encryption confounds

6/29: How to see everything Google knows about you

6/28: Hillary Clinton backs controversial encryption commission in new tech-policy agenda

6/27: A scientist installed cameras around ‘no trespassing’ signs at a beach to see how people reacted and was pleasantly surprised

6/27: Google beats children’s web privacy appeal, Viacom to face one claim

6/26: Transit Agency Ends Audio Recording on Light Rail Vehicles

6/26: Browse Free or Die? New Hampshire Library Is at Privacy Fore

6/23: Warrantless breath tests are okay after drunken driving arrests — but warrantless blood tests are not

6/22: Mark Zuckerberg covers his webcam with tape, and so should you

6/21: With facial recognition tech on the rise, is it time to delete all your selfies?

6/21: Internet-rights groups launch protest over expanded FBI hacking powers

6/18: How Apple plans on making features smarter while balancing privacy

6/17: Foggy on Police Transparency

6/16: What the FBI isn’t saying about its facial recognition capabilities

6/16: Consumer Groups Say AT&T, Comcast Violate Privacy Law By Hoovering Up Cable Box Data Without Full User Consent

6/16 There Is No Such Thing as Private Data

6/16: Fed watchdog raises questions about FBI facial recognition accuracy, privacy

6/14: 1 in 3 shoppers will never use beacons in stores

6/11: Amazon Will Sell You a Super Cheap Phone (At the Cost of Your Soul)

6/10: Your password is definitely going to get stolen so please do this to protect yourself

6/10: How to Fix Your Privacy on Android

6/6: This is how Silicon Valley’s most secretive startup makes money

6/6: Tesla may be sharing data with the government to help advance regulation on autopilot vehicles

6/5: Edward Snowden responds to NSA correspondences released to the public

6/3: FTC Warns of Security and Privacy Risks in IoT Devices

6/3: How to Lock Down Your Privacy Settings on iOS

6/2: Your Data Is Forever

6/2: Google voice search is recording conversations people have around their phones — here’s how to delete the files

6/1: Stung By Yelp Reviews, Health Providers Spill Patient Secrets

6/1: Security researchers stop disclosing vulnerabilities after FBI raid on fellow researcher

6/1: Facebook reportedly plans to make it impossible for the police to read your messages

5/27: FBI raids dental software researcher who discovered private patient data on public server

5/24: FTC commissioner: Mandating encryption backdoors ‘is a terrible idea’

5/17: It’s trivially easy to identify you based on records of your calls and texts

5/16: New batch of Snowden’s leaked NSA docs are now available to the public

5/16: If You Clicked Anything Online, Google Probably Knows About It

4/27: Thank Snowden, As NSA Estimates He Singlehandedly Sped Up Encryption Adoption By 7 Years

 

Local:

6/30: Portland Redditors Rally Around “Drone Man,” Who Plans to Monitor More Homeless People From the Sky

6/29: Hobo Pirates Fire Gunshot at Drone Filming Their Willamette River Boat Camp

6/14: Seattle, cloudy with a chance of technology upgrades

6/13: Judge blocks Seattle from disclosing FBI surveillance info

5/6: Unmanned drone smashes into Seattle home

4/15: Oregon Department of Justice Civil Rights Chief Intends to Sue His Agency Over Black Lives Matter Surveillance

 

Govt:

7/1: US Customs Wants Foreigners to Provide Social Media Details When Entering the US

7/1: Leak Reveals Secret FBI Guidelines That Basically Give Them Free Rein To Spy On Journalists And Sources

6/29: Should Border Agents Scroll Through Foreigners’ Facebook Profiles?

6/30: House Committee Report Slams Proposed Encryption Legislation

6/28: U.S. senator, opposing FBI email data grabs, places hold on spy bill

6/28: States Offer Privacy Protection For Young Adults On Parents’ Health Plan

6/26: Gun owners to have special place in FBI biometric database

6/24: Judge Says FBI Can Hack Computers Without A Warrant Because Computer Users Get Hacked All The Time

6/23: High Court Limits Drunk Driving Test Laws

6/22: Senate votes down proposal to expand FBI surveillance powers

6/22: FTC Settles With Mobile Ad Firm InMobi Over Tracking

6/20: Supreme Court Knocks A Little More Off The 4th Amendment; Gives Cops Another Way To Salvage Illegal Searches

6/19: Few Utah Police Report Drone Use, Cite Tough FAA Regulations

6/3: Will the Constitution Protect Your Next Smartphone?

6/9: Cops can now seize people’s cash by scanning their prepaid cards

6/1: Tech companies are banding together to fight the FBI’s biometric program

6/1: 4th Circuit Appeals Court Rolls Back Its Warrant Requirement For Cell Site Location Info

5/25: Congrats, FBI, You’ve Now Convinced Silicon Valley To Encrypt And Dump Log Files

5/24: Apple, Facebook, other major tech players push Senate to pass email privacy reform

5/5: When A Fingerprint IS The Password, Where Does The Fifth Amendment Come Into Play?

5/3: National Intelligence Office’s Top Lawyer Fires Off Spirited Defense Of Bulk Surveillance, Third Party Doctrine

4/22: FISA Court Rejects Arguments By First Public Advocate To Argue NSA PRISM Backdoor Searches Are Unconstitutional

 

Policy:

7/1: Sports Authority’s sale of customer data raises privacy questions

7/1: When Should Hacking Be Legal?

6/29: New Rules for Drones

6/28: The 24 ways we’re tracked on a regular basis reveal something disturbing about the future

6/18: Workers May Soon Have To Share Health Data — Or Pay A Penalty

6/10: After Trump’s Proposed Boycott of Apple, GOP Says Encryption Is The Bedrock of Security

5/27: The imperfect surveillance state

5/13: Why a staggering number of Americans have stopped using the Internet the way they used to

5/4: Encryption, Privacy & Free Speech: An April Recap

 

Overseas:

7/2: Encryption creating a barrier for police, documents suggest

6/30: Japan’s top court has approved blanket surveillance of the country’s Muslims

6/30: Facebook wins privacy case against Belgian data protection authority

6/29: This alarming government video says ‘when you travel, you have no privacy, and all your communication might be watched’

6/29: Is Edward Snowden Trying To Get Vladimir Putin’s Attention?

6/27: China moves closer to adopting controversial cybersecurity law

6/24: The Latest: UK Exit Could Weaken Privacy Protections

6/24: EU, United States agree on changes to strengthen data transfer pact

6/23: Russia’s Problem (According To Russian Politicians): Not Enough Mass Surveillance

6/23: Russia Wants Encryption Backdoors in Telegram, WhatsApp, Viber, Allo, Others

6/22: This Russian technology can identify you with just a picture of your face

6/17: Poland To Massively Expand Surveillance, Reduce Civil Liberties

6/16: Scottish Law Enforcement Also Apparently Hooked Up To NSA/GCHQ’s Data Firehose

6/10: Wikipedia warns against French attempt to extend EU privacy law globally

6/10: Communications Show GCHQ’s ‘Oversight’ Talking Itself Out Of Performing Any Sort Of Oversight

6/8: SECRET REPORT: UK spies have more data than they know what to do with

6/8: UK Parliament Ignores Concerns; Moves Snooper’s Charter Forward

6/7: German privacy regulator fines three firms over U.S. data transfers

6/7: The Home Office Is Accessing Thousands Of People’s NHS Data To Trace Illegal Immigrants

6/7: British parliament’s lower house passes controversial surveillance law

6/6: Here’s why people are so worked up about the ‘Snooper’s Charter’

6/3: Investigation Shows GCHQ Using US Companies, NSA To Route Around Domestic Surveillance Restrictions

6/1: This police camera can spot drivers texting from nearly a mile away

5/31: Top European privacy official says E.U.–U.S. data-transfer deal still needs work

5/23: Indian leader frames encryption as cybercrime concern in meeting with Apple CEO

4/26: Constitutional Court Throws Out Surveillance Law In Georgia (The Country)

 

Tech:

6/30: How to Use Facebook Privacy Settings

6/30: Any links shared on Facebook Messenger can be viewed publicly—and Facebook says it’s not a bug

6/29: Facebook made a huge U-turn and says it doesn’t use location data to suggest friends after all

6/28: Google Offers New Way for Users to Manage Ads, Personal Data

6/28: Can smartphones help improve heart attack treatment?

6/27: The hidden security features in buildings that you never noticed

6/21: Workers Find Safe Spaces In Private Slack Channels, But How Safe Are They?

6/10: This startup will scrape your Facebook data and then sell its reports to landlords

6/9: National Intelligence office wants to perfect the art of security deception

6/8: The trick that let hackers keep tracking Waze users after it was ‘fixed’

6/4: 6 simple WhatsApp tricks for beginners

6/2: This $17,000 Android smartphone claims to be the ultimate in personal security

5/26: Despite anger from privacy advocates, Netflix shows no sign of ending geo-blocking and VPN ban

5/18: The future of biometrics is coming–but not without risks

5/10: This browser is offering iPhone users a free, unlimited virtual private network

3/30: Announcing: the Inaugural Class of PitchFestNW 2016!

 

Books/Media/Misc:

6/30: Edward Snowden Will Join Daniel Radcliffe in ‘Privacy,’ via Video

6/24: Illuminating the ‘Dark’ Web and Content Monitoring

6/15: On the Wire Podcast: Rich Mogull on Apple Differential Privacy

6/15: Review: In ‘Louis D. Brandeis: American Prophet,’ Moral Vision and a True Believer’s Zeal

Privacy News Update, 1-17-16

So it’s been too long, apologies – but here you go for the new year!

Featured:

1/15:  As New York looks to ban encrypted smartphones, here’s what you can do

1/10:  The new way police are surveilling you: Calculating your threat ‘score’

1/9:  Now that they know the NSA is spying on them, Congress is really worried about domestic surveillance

1/8:  Apple, Google, Microsoft attack government hacking plans

1/8:  Facial recognition tool screens travellers for border officers (Canada)

1/8:  Washington raises pressure on Silicon Valley in fight against terrorism

1/8:  Why Amazon’s Data Centers Are Hidden in Spy Country

1/7:  Parents Monitoring Teenagers Online, and Mostly, Getting It Right

1/7:  U.S. Tech Giants Join Forces Against U.K. Spying Plans

1/7:  Apple Buys Startup That Sees What’s Behind Your Smile

1/7:  Repeal authority to expand Real ID: Opposing view

1/6:  Severe Silent Circle Blackphone vulnerability lets hackers take over

1/6:  Work for the Electronic Frontier Foundation: Hacker, lawyer, activist geeks

1/6:  Under Gun Rules, F.B.I. Will Receive Health Data

1/6:  The Extortionist in the Fridge

1/4:  A Redaction Re-Visited: NSA Targeted “The Two Leading” Encryption Chips

1/4:  How ‘Do Not Track’ Ended Up Going Nowhere

12/31:  In 2015, promising surveillance cases ran into legal brick walls

12/31:  Gadgets smarter, but are they safe?

12/31:  Why Are Digital-Privacy Apps So Hard to Use?

12/31:  It’s an Unobtrusive Assistant Whispering in Your Ear (Not Little Brother)

12/30:  UK government wants to send tech execs to jail for disclosing surveillance

12/29:  A Wake-Up Call To Fight Government Surveillance

12/29:  Microsoft may have your encryption key; here’s how to take it back

12/24:  Just Before Passing Surveillance Expansion, Lawmakers Partied With How ‘Do Not Track’ Ended Up Going NowherePro-CISA Lobbyists

12/23:  NSA Helped British Spies Find Security Holes In Juniper Firewalls

12/21:  What Your Fitbit Doesn’t Want You to Know

12/15:  The Government Wants Access to Smartphones. What You Should Know

12/14:  EFF and Human Rights Watch force DEA to destroy its mass surveillance database

12/13:  Why social media profiles of visa applicants, job seekers and borrowers are being scanned

12/13:  Otay Mesa border crossing launches testing of facial recognition technology

12/9:  Crowdfunding ORG’s campaign to fight the UK government’s mass surveillance

11/26:  What mobile phone data can reveal about you, in Rwanda or right here at home

11/12:  How Edward Snowden Changed Everything

 

Local to PNW:

1/6:  Washington state to review personal data under new cybersecurity office

12/1:  Audit sheds light on body camera program as more police officers outfitted

11/17:  Steve Duin: The coolest maps of Portland you’ve ever seen

 

Govt:

1/9:  Bill would protect student social media privacy (Wyo.)

1/8:  U.S. Gives States 2 More Years to Meet Driver’s License Standards

1/7:  FTC warns companies that ‘big data’ comes with the potential for big problems

1/6:  After neighbor shot down his drone, Kentucky man files federal lawsuit

1/6:  How Drones Are Adapting to New U.S. Rules

1/6:  More Than 180,000 Drone Users Registered in F.A.A. Database

12/28:  T.S.A. Moves Closer to Rejecting Some State Driver’s Licenses for Travel

12/27:  F.A.A. Drone Laws Start to Clash With Stricter Local Rules

12/26:  Secrecy Shuts Down a National-Security Debate

12/22:  The Logo That Took Down a DARPA Surveillance Project

12/21:  Hillary Clinton wants “Manhattan-like project” to break encryption

12/18:  Erroneous Claims Made About Basic Classification Data in The Intercept’s Spy Gear Documents

12/16:  Six Embarrassing Things Republicans Said About Cybersecurity Last Night

12/3:  Congress Wants to Protect Your Emails From Warrantless Searches

12/1:  IRS: Won’t use phone-tracking technology without warrant

11/28:  America’s super-secret court names five lawyers as public advocates

 

Policy:

1/15:  Smartphone encryption ban? It’s a boon for criminals and terrorists

1/13:  The Long and Winding History of Encryption

1/9:  Drone Regulations Should Focus on Safety and Privacy

1/8:  Learning the wrong lesson on privacy from Henrietta Lacks

1/5:  Column: Drivers need to get from A to B safely — not feed their digital addictions

12/31:  Lessig on how the economics of data-retention will drive privacy tech

12/30:  Your Cells. Their Research. Your Permission?

12/29:  Digital privacy about to feel real-world shock to its system

12/27:  Contra Costa Times editorial: Spending bill slips in erosion of privacy rights for cybersecurity

12/22:  Restoring the Right to Be Let Alone

12/19:  Technology And The Deep State

12/18:  Wolverton: Snowden moment may be passing with new fears, pushback

12/14:  Opinion: Rise of the Drones

12/13:  Why protecting customers’ data should trump profits every time

12/11:  ‘I want to join the NSA. What do you think of that?’

12/11:  The Moral Failure of Computer Scientists

12/5:  This War On Math Is Bullshit

12/4:  Master of the house: why we should fight for truly private spaces

11/28:  Could the Third Amendment be used to fight the surveillance state?

10/1:  Americans Love Technology—but They Want Their Privacy Back

 

Overseas:

1/9:  Risks And Red Lines As UK Prepares To Reforge Surveillance Law

1/8: ​ UN experts warn of ‘chilling effect’ on freedoms over UK surveillance bill

1/8:  Australia ‘may do dumb things’ with crypto in 2016: EFF

1/8:  Why tech firms hate new UK surveillance law

1/5:  Police to deploy drones to catch thieves, help break sieges

12/27:  U.K. Home Secretary Defends Controversial Surveillance Bill, Says It Will Stop Cyber Bullies

12/27:  China’s New Big Brother Law Is A Clone Of The West’s Bad Ideas

12/25:  Hyde Park visitors covertly tracked via mobile phone data

12/16:  IXmaps: a tool to figure out when the NSA can see Canadians’ data

12/22:  Europe and U.S. have different approaches to protecting privacy of personal data

12/16:  EU passes strict new data collection regulations

12/10:  European plan for blanket collection of air passengers’ data clears key hurdle

12/10:  Costs And Risks Of UK’s Draft Surveillance Powers Probed

12/8:  German Carmakers Gobbled Up Nokia Maps So No One Else Would Take It

12/8:  Kazakhstan’s New Encryption Law Could Be a Preview of U.S. Policy

 

Tech:

1/9:  Car Accessories Gone Wild at CES 2016

1/9:  Google patents a wearable that tells you to take your medications when you eat

1/6:  Dojo-Labs aims to tap into Internet of Things device security

12/29:  Looks like Google Glass is back

12/23:  If You’re Launching A Tech Startup In 2016, Focus On Privacy And Fast Data

12/18:  Apple CEO Tim Cook Keeps Support for Unbreakable Encryption

12/18:  Blackberry CEO Chen: We Don’t Keep Data (video)

12/14:  Qubes OS will ship pre-installed on Purism’s security-focused Librem 13 laptop

12/7:  Windows 10 Settings menu: The Privacy tab

12/2:  Google: No, We’re Not Snooping on Students With Our Chromebooks, Apps

11/10:  Ted Cruz’s App Rewards Users for Turning Over Their Friends’ Contact Info

 

Misc Media/Books/Etc.:

1/3:  In a new era of surveillance and doublethink, ‘1984’ takes to the stage

Privacy News Update, 8-9-15

Featured:

8/8  Want to be totally secure on the Internet? Good luck

8/8:  These Glasses Block Facial Recognition Technology

8/7:  Check your Android device for the Stagefright vulnerability

8/7:  EFF’s Privacy Badger will block snooping ads and invisible trackers

8/6:  Group: Surveillance flights not targeting Arab Americans

8/6:  “PING SUSP PHONE”—An Oakland shooting reveals how cops snoop on cell phones

8/6:  Dream of Internet freedom dying, Black Hat keynoter says

8/6:  Daily Report: Google and the Spread of the ‘Right to Be Forgotten’

8/5:  NSA’S EPIC Fail: Spy Agency Pays Lawyers That Sue It

8/4:  EFF and MuckRock Need Your Help Tracking Biometric Surveillance

8/4:  What happened when we got subpoenaed over our Tor exit node

8/3:  After 27 Years, Reporter Who Exposed ECHELON Finds Vindication in Snowden Archive

8/3:  GCHQ and Me: My Life Unmasking British Eavesdroppers

8/3:  Privacy Alert: Your Laptop Or Phone Battery Could Track You Online

8/3:  Global spy system ECHELON confirmed at last – by leaked Snowden files

7/31:  New attack on Tor can deanonymize hidden services with surprising accuracy

7/31:  Facebook’s use of facial-recognition tool draws privacy ire

7/31:  Patch Your OnStar iOS App to Avoid Getting Your Car Hacked

7/31:  Tor Project Pilots Exit Nodes In Libraries

7/31:  GasBuddy Has a New Privacy Policy (Spoiler: Not As Customer Friendly)

7/31:  More Campuses Are Scanning Students’ Eyeballs Instead Of IDs

7/30:  CISA: The Dirty Deal Between Google and the NSA That No One Is Talking About

7/30:  GAO To Congress: Revisit Privacy Concerns Over Facial Recognition Technology

7/30:  FBI accuses Bay Area animal activist of ‘domestic terrorism’

7/30:  Bloke cuffed for blowing low-flying camera drone to bits with shotgun

7/30:  How to update your Uconnect-equipped car and the keep hackers out

7/30:  Glare of Video Is Shifting Public’s View of Police

7/29:  Congress’ fix for high-profile hacks is yet another way to grab your private data

7/29:  MIT boffins identify Tor hidden services with 88 per cent accuracy

7/28:  Honeywell Home Controllers Open To Any Hacker Who Can Find Them Online

7/28:  Wyden Blasts Plan to Have Tech Companies Report “Terrorist Activity” — Whatever That Is

7/28:  Oh, Obama’s responded to the petition to pardon Snowden. What’ll it be?

7/27:  NSA Will Destroy Archived Metadata When Program Stops

7/27:  Most Android phones can be hacked with one text

7/24:  Boffins sting spooks with ‘HORNET’ onion router

7/12:  Here are EFF’s most influential cases from its first 25 years

7/7:  An Artful Reminder That Surveillance Is Becoming Second Nature

7/6:  Despite the Settlement Talks, Don’t Expect the NYPD to Stop Spying on Muslims

7/6:  This Free Font Automatically Redacts NSA Surveillance Trigger Words

7/5:  The Best Phones For The Privacy-Obsessed

6/17:  Say Hello to Cam and Aware, Nest’s New Home Surveillance System

 

Local:

8/6:  Washington justices: Attorney-client privacy not absolute

8/6:  ATF confirms surveillance cameras installed throughout Seattle

8/1:  Congress Should Look Beyond the Gas Tax

7/28:  Local Governments Increasingly Poking Through Your Garbage

7/27:  Digital surveillance firm has local police contacts, leaked emails reveal

7/16:  Black community leaders call for surveillance cameras

 

Govt:

8/7:  A year after Michael Brown, the body cam business is booming

8/7:  Apple, Google should give FBI every last drop of user information, says ex-HP CEO and wannabe US prez Carly Fiorina

8/7:  Rand Paul And Chris Christie Spar Over NSA Surveillance

8/5:  Justice Department Watchdog Fears Redaction Creep Will Obstruct Oversight

8/5:  Hey, FBI. Wanna track someone by cellphone? Get a proper warrant, says US appeals court

8/5:  Cybersecurity Bill Is Latest to Be Delayed in Senate

8/4:  New US cyber laws will hit privacy and security, says Homeland Security

8/4:  Wait, what? TrueCrypt ‘decrypted’ by FBI to nail doc-stealing sysadmin

8/4:  Homeland Security warns drones could be used as weapons

8/2:  New Telemetry Suggests Shot-Down Drone Was Higher Than Alleged

8/1:  White House will not force FBI to get a warrant for email data

7/31:  TSA’s Behavior Detection Program Has a Newsletter, and It’s Ridiculous

7/31:  NSA report shows China hacked 600+ US targets over 5 years

7/30:  New York Police Should Revise Body Camera Rules, Report Says

7/28:  NSA Doesn’t Want Court That Found Phone Dragnet Illegal to Actually Do Anything About It

7/28:  U.N. Gives U.S. Flunking Grades on Privacy and Surveillance Rights

7/28:  All New Jersey Troopers to Get Body Cameras Within a Year

7/14:  ACLU to appellate court: Please halt NSA’s resumed bulk data collection

7/13:  The Side of Drone Warfare No One Is Talking About

6/29:  This Guy’s Neighbor Will Pay For Shooting Down His Drone

 

Policy:

8/8:  Regulators Should Develop Rules to Protect Cars From Hackers

8/6:  Why privacy activists and economists should be on the same side

8/6:  Medical Privacy Under Threat in the Age of Big Data

8/4:  Backyard privacy deserves buffer from drones: Bloomberg View

8/4:  Memo to MPAA: Congress didn’t pass SOPA

8/3:  Police Body Cams Should Turn on Automatically, Says Richard Stallman

8/1:  Are your gadgets listening to your private conversations?

7/31:  Magid: Concerns raised about cybersecurity bill

7/31:  How Our Country and Its Language has Changed since 9/11- One Nation under Surveillance for Liberty and Justice for All?

7/31:  EXCLUSIVE: Edward Snowden Explains Why Apple Should Continue To Fight the Government on Encryption

7/29:  Can Your Reputation Withstand Increased Surveillance?

7/29:  Stop Hiding Police Misconduct in New York

7/28:  It’s Time To Modernize The HIPAA Privacy Rule

7/28:  The President Should Veto Cybersurveillance Legislation

7/27:  Practical Privacy Guidance: A Consumer Data Compact

7/25:  Increased use of police cameras raises new questions

 

Overseas:

8/8:  Safe as houses: CCTV for the masses

8/7:  Psychologist’s Work for GCHQ Deception Unit Inflames Debate Among Peers

8/5:  Why Won’t Julian Assange Condemn Ecuador’s Spying Software?

8/5:  Germany’s top prosecutor fired over Netzpolitik “treason” probe

7/31:  Germany Won’t Prosecute NSA, But Bloggers

7/31:  New WikiLeaks Cache Reveals a Decade of U.S. Spying on Japan

7/31:  Google Refuses French Order to Apply ‘Right to Be Forgotten’ Globally

7/28:  Chat about Safe Harbour all you like, the NSA’s still the stumbling block

7/28:  German Regulator Orders Facebook to Allow Pseudonyms

7/27:  Peru Decrees Warrantless Geolocation Tracking of Cellphones

7/27:  New Google EU Policy Forces Publishers to Ask Permission Before Tracking Data

7/24:  France Clears Final Hurdle to Expand Spying Power

7/21:  As Nations Hack Each Other, Protecting Personal Information Must Become National Security Priority

7/2:  GCHQ did spy on Amnesty International, secret tribunal admits

6/23:  France’s Three Most Recent Presidents Got Wiretapped by the NSA

 

Tech:

8/6:  The sound of silence: new video tech looks beyond the internet of things

8/6:  IBM Adds Medical Images to Watson, Buying Merge Healthcare for $1 Billion

8/5:  Spyware Demo Shows How Spooks Hack Mobile Phones

8/4:  Xerox: How Privacy Engineering Is Changing Big Data

8/4:  Drone zooms through humpback whale breath

8/4:  Want Windows 10 to stop tracking you? Now there’s an app for that

8/3:  ForgeRock Ignites New ‘Kantara’ Standard For Digital Consent, Privacy And Identity

8/3:  The Internet of Things and the Future of Farming

8/3:  EFF Coalition Announces New ‘Do Not Track’ Standard For Web Browsing

8/3:  If you installed Windows 10 and like privacy, you checked the defaults, right? Oh dear

8/1:  Ask Slashdot: Can You Disable Windows 10’s Privacy-Invading Features?

8/1:  Drones Being Tested To Fight Against Farm Pests

7/31:  Smartphones could be car keys, if kinks get worked out

7/30:  How Fake Data Could Protect Real People’s Privacy

7/30:  Silent Circle’s Blackphone 2 to support Android for Work

7/30:  SPUD – The IETF’s anti-snooping protocol that will never be used

7/23:  Founder of GNU bestows blessing upon open hardware-focused crowdfunding site

 

Privacy news update, 6-29

Gov Oversight Board Will Weigh In On The Legality Of PRISM

Seattleland: SPD Drones Draw Flak in L.A. as Airborne Spying Comes Under Attack, Literally

Maybe Congress Will Now Move to Protect Email From Warrantless Searches

When a Health Plan Knows How You Shop

Airship flies above NSA data center, decries “Illegal Spying Below

FBI Issued 19,000 National Security Letters In 2013

US pushing local cops to stay mum on surveillance

Snarky Lawmaker Reminds Former NSA Chief That Selling State Secrets Is Illegal

Over NSA worries, Germany ends government contract with Verizon

Forced to Hand Over Data, Facebook Files Appeal

Cisco open-sources experimental cipher

Courts may hear challenges to secret cell tracking devices after new ruling

How Nest Is Already Using All That Data From Its Army of Smoke Alarms

The British Government Just Set a Dangerous Precedent for Online Spying

NSA Transparency Report Offers More Questions Than Answers

Poll Indicates Broad Support For Email Privacy Overhaul

Digital Privacy Is Fundamentally Different From Physical Privacy

When a car rats you out: Your license plate vs. your privacy

LAPD’s two drones under lock-and-key by feds until rules in place

3 ways Glenn Greenwald changed how I look at privacy

What a Toilet Hoax Can Tell Us About the Future of Surveillance

Philz Coffee Drops Euclid Analytics Over Privacy Concerns

Number Six

Privacy-*favorable* ISP….?

be still my heart….From Declan McCullagh’s Privacy Inc. CNET column…. Number Six

This Internet provider pledges to put your privacy first. Always.

Nicholas Merrill is planning to revolutionize online privacy with a concept as simple as it is ingenious: a telecommunications provider designed from its inception to shield its customers from surveillance.

Merrill, 39, who previously ran a New York-based Internet provider, told CNET that he’s raising funds to launch a national “non-profit telecommunications provider dedicated to privacy, using ubiquitous encryption” that will sell mobile phone service and, for as little as $20 a month, Internet connectivity.

The ISP would not merely employ every technological means at its disposal, including encryption and limited logging, to protect its customers. It would also — and in practice this is likely more important — challenge government surveillance demands of dubious legality or constitutionality.

A decade of revelations has underlined the intimate relationship between many telecommunications companies and Washington officialdom. Leading providers including AT&T and Verizon handed billions of customer telephone records to the National Security Agency; only Qwest refused to participate. Verizon turned over customer data to the FBI without court orders. An AT&T whistleblower accused the company of illegally opening its network to the NSA, a practice that the U.S. Congress retroactively made legal in 2008.

By contrast, Merrill says his ISP, to be run by a non-profit called the Calyx Institute with for-profit subsidiaries, will put customers first. “Calyx will use all legal and technical means available to protect the privacy and integrity of user data,” he says.

Merrill is in the unique position of being the first ISP exec to fight back against the Patriot Act’s expanded police powers — and win.
Nick Merrill, who once challenged a demand from the FBI for user data, is planning to create the world's first privacy-protective Internet and mobile phone provider.

Nick Merrill says that “we will use all legal and technical means to resist having to hand over information, and aspire to be the partner in the telecommunications industry that ACLU and EFF have always needed but never had.”
(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

In February 2004, the FBI sent Merrill a secret “national security letter” (not an actual court order signed by a judge) asking for confidential information about his customers and forbidding him from disclosing the letter’s existence. He enlisted the ACLU to fight the gag order, and won. A federal judge barred the FBI from invoking that portion of the law, ruling it was “an “unconstitutional prior restraint of speech in violation of the First Amendment.”

Merrill’s identity was kept confidential for years as the litigation continued. In 2007, the Washington Post published his anonymous op-ed which said: “I resent being conscripted as a secret informer for the government,” especially because “I have doubts about the legitimacy of the underlying investigation.” He wasn’t able to discuss his case publicly until 2010.

His recipe for Calyx was inspired by those six years of interminable legal wrangling with the Feds: Take wireless service like that offered by Clear, which began selling 4G WiMAX broadband in 2009. Inject end-to-end encryption for Web browsing. Add e-mail that’s stored in encrypted form, so even Calyx can’t read it after it arrives. Wrap all of this up into an easy-to-use package and sell it for competitive prices, ideally around $20 a month without data caps, though perhaps prepaid for a full year.

“The idea that we are working on is to not be capable of complying” with requests from the FBI for stored e-mail and similar demands, Merrill says.

A 1994 federal law called the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act was highly controversial when it was enacted because it required telecommunications carriers to configure their networks for easy wiretappability by the FBI. But even CALEA says that ISPs “shall not be responsible for decrypting” communications if they don’t possess “the information necessary to decrypt.”

Translation: make sure your customers own their data and only they can decrypt it.

Merrill has formed an advisory board with members including Sascha Meinrath from the New America Foundation; former NSA technical director Brian Snow; and Jacob Appelbaum from the Tor Project.

“I have no doubt that such an organization would be extremely useful,” ACLU deputy legal director Jameel Jaffer wrote in a letter last month. “Our ability to protect individual privacy in the realm of telecommunications depends on the availability of phone companies and ISPs willing to work with us, and unfortunately the number of companies willing to publicly challenge the government is exceedingly small.”

The next step for Merrill is to raise about $2 million and then, if all goes well, launch the service later this year. Right now Calyx is largely self-funded. Thanks to a travel grant from the Ford Foundation, Merrill is heading to the San Francisco Bay Area later this month to meet with venture capitalists and individual angel investors.

“I am getting a lot of stuff for free since everyone I’ve talked to is crazy about the idea,” Merrill says. “I am getting all the back-end software written for free by Riseup using a grant they just got.”

While the intimacy of the relationship between Washington and telecommunications companies varies over time, it’s existed in one form or another for decades. In his 2006 book titled “State of War,” New York Times reporter James Risen wrote: “The NSA has extremely close relationships with both the telecommunications and computer industries, according to several government officials. Only a very few top executives in each corporation are aware of such relationships.”

Louis Tordella, the longest-serving deputy director of the NSA, acknowledged overseeing a project to intercept telegrams in the 1970s. Called Project Shamrock, it relied on the major telegraph companies including Western Union secretly turning over copies of all messages sent to or from the United States.

“All of the big international carriers were involved, but none of ’em ever got a nickel for what they did,” Tordella said before his death in 1996, according to a history written by L. Britt Snider, a Senate aide who became the CIA’s inspector general.

Like the eavesdropping system that President George W. Bush secretly authorized, Project Shamrock had a “watch list” of people whose conversations would be identified and plucked out of the ether by NSA computers. It was initially intended to be used for foreign intelligence purposes, but at its peak, 600 American citizens appeared on the list, including singer Joan Baez, pediatrician Benjamin Spock, actress Jane Fonda and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
Nick Merrill says that "if we were given any orders that were questionable, we wouldn't hesitate to challenge them in court."

Nick Merrill says that “if we were given any orders that were questionable, we wouldn’t hesitate to challenge them in court.”
(Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET)

Even if Calyx encrypts everything, the surveillance arms of the FBI and the bureau’s lesser-known counterparts will still have other legal means to eavesdrop on Americans, of course. Police can remotely install spyware on a suspect’s computer. Or install keyloggers by breaking into a home or office. Or, as the Secret Service outlined at last year’s RSA conference, they can try to guess passwords and conduct physical surveillance.

That prospect doesn’t exactly please the FBI. Last year, CNET was the first to report that the FBI warned Congress about what it dubbed the “Going Dark” problem, meaning when police are thwarted in conducting court-authorized eavesdropping because Internet companies aren’t required to build in back doors in advance, or because the technology doesn’t permit it. FBI general counsel Valerie Caproni said at the time that agents armed with wiretap orders need to be able to conduct surveillance of “Web-based e-mail, social networking sites, and peer-to-peer communications technology.”

But until Congress changes the law, a privacy-first ISP like Calyx will remain perfectly legal.

“It’s a really urgent problem that is crying out for a solution,” Merrill says.

Update 12:05 p.m. PT: This article sparked a lengthy Reddit thread, complete with repeated suggestions that Nick Merrill should turn to Kickstarter to raise money. Merrill told me this morning that Kickstarter “wouldn’t accept Calyx as a campaign because it’s not a physical product, or arts-related.” But he has set up a contribution page, with a $1 million target, on IndieGogo.com, a self-described crowdfunding platform. “There has been a ton of interest in the idea,” Merrill told me. “Due to popular demand I have decided to try crowd-sourced funding the idea in order to prove that the demand exists.” If he makes the $1 million target, IndieGogo takes a smaller percentage. Internet privacy aficionados, what say you?