The national Terrorist Watch List has now crossed one million names -- that's a million suspected terrorists (including nuns, members of Congress, and people named "Robert Johnson") who will spend their days being harassed, denied the fundamental right to travel, and punished for having a name vaguely like the name used by someone who may or may not be a terrorist. There's no way to get off the list, and the list (and the criteria for adding names to it) are secret.
"America's new million record watch list is a perfect symbol for what's wrong with this administration's approach to security: it's unfair, out-of-control, a waste of resources, treats the rights of the innocent as an afterthought, and is a very real impediment in the lives of millions of travelers in this country," said Barry Steinhardt, director of the ACLU Technology and Liberty Program. "It must be fixed without delay."
"Putting a million names on a watch list is a guarantee that the list will do more harm than good by interfering with the travel of innocent people and wasting huge amounts of our limited security resources on bureaucratic wheel-spinning," said Steinhardt. "I doubt this thing would even be effective at catching a real terrorist."
Controls on the watch lists called for by the ACLU included:
* due process
* a right to access and challenge data upon which listing is based
* tight criteria for adding names to the lists
* rigorous procedures for updating and cleansing names from the lists.
Back in 2017, EFF, ACLU and ACLU of Massachusetts sued the US government on behalf of 11 travelers whose devices had been subjected to warrantless, suspicionless searches by Customs and Border Protection at the US border.
EFF has just posted a job listing for a development director, seeking someone to "take charge of EFF's eleven-person Development Team in their efforts to raise over $13 million each year," starting late 2019 or early 2020.
ORG -- the UK Open Rights Group (disclosure: I am a co-founder and volunteers on its advisory board) is hiring a Data and Democracy Project Officer: "responsible for delivering our work on preserving democratic integrity in the digital age. This role has two main areas of focus: 1) electronic voting and 2) the use of […]
Things break, and even in this disposable world, there’s a need to fix them. Up until recently, that’s been the crusty bottle of glue in your junk drawer, which is just as liable to coat your fingers as the thing you actually want to repair. Looks like there’s finally a Star Trek-level solution on the […]
Paying for things is all too easy online these days, and that’s why managing your money has gotten so hard. We’ve all done it: You sign up for a streaming subscription or gym membership, blow past the free trial date, and it becomes a part of your monthly expenses. Some of us juggle so many […]
We all know those gifts we get “for the kids,” the ones that parents are secretly more excited to open. Drones are a perfect example, but there’s a model out there that really doubles down on that appeal. Introducing the Space Fighter Building Block Drones, a series of space fighter drones that are a blast […]