Senators Richard Burr [R-NC] and Dianne Feinstein [D-CA] finally introduced their long-rumored anti-crypto bill, which will ban US companies from making products with working cryptography, mandating that US-made products have some way to decrypt information without the user's permission.
Remember when it looked like the Senate committee that oversees the CIA was writing the notorious CIA Torture Report, and caught the CIA searching their Senate bosses' files to find out what they knew?
After an all-night session, Rand Paul [R-KY] and Ron Wyden [D-OR] tag-teamed majority leader Mitch McConnell [R-KY] and beat him to the mat — he has abandoned the current legislative effort to extend section 215 of the Patriot Act, which authorizes mass surveillance and is set to expire on June 1.
Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) has written a letter to outgoing Attorney General Eric "Too Big to Jail" Holder about all those other letters the senator has sent to the AG asking why, exactly, the DoJ thinks that mass spying is legal.
It's a legislative shot across the bow of the FBI, who are demanding back-doors in phones and other devices, claiming "children will die" unless our pocket supercomputers are designed to allow untrusted parties to secretly take them over.
"Aaron Swartz was not the first or the last victim of overzealous prosecution under the CFAA," write Democratic Representative from California Zoe Lofgren and Ron Wyden, a Democratic Senator from Oregon. "That's why we're authoring bipartisan legislation — which, with the permission of Aaron Swartz's family, we call 'Aaron's Law' — in the House and Senate to begin the process of updating the CFAA." — Read the rest
Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden has demanded that the Obama administration receive Congressional assent before signing the USA up to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, a wide-reaching international copyright treaty that was negotiated in secret (even Congress and the European Parliament weren't allowed to read the treaty drafts as they were negotiated). — Read the rest
Senator Ron Wyden's staffers have promised a flood of Freedom of Information Act requests to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement division of the DHS over its program of seizing domains it believes to be implicated in copyright infringement. ICE's domain-seizure program made news this week when the Kafkaesque tale of dajaz1.com — Read the rest
As SOPA ("the worst Internet law in American legislative history") steamrolls its way through the House, the slightly less batshit senate version, PROTECT-IP, is also heading for passage. But Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) has vowed to block it with an epic filibuster in which he will read into the record the names of every American who signs the petition against the bill. — Read the rest
If today you asked, "How much more corrupt can Justice Thomas look?" The answer is none, none more corrupt. Thomas is a walking god damn red flag for reforming the Supreme Court and applying some or any ethics rules they are legally bound by. — Read the rest
Surprise! The FBI has been involved in warrantless surveillance! But that's not particularly surprising; we've known that for a while now (even in some pundits like to pretend as if it's absolutely unprecedented when the FBI occasionally stops monitoring Muslims, Black rights, and environmental activists and turns their attention to money laundering networks surrounding right-wing politicians). — Read the rest
The summer of 2020 was a time nationwide unrest, but the protests in Portland, Oregon attracted a particularly rabid fascination. The then-President of the United States of America and his supporters encouraged the idea that there was a massive conspiracy of hyper-organized anarchist anti-fascists in the city working under direct orders from George Soros and/or the Democratic National Committee to cause civil unrest and destabilize the region in order to ensure a Democratic victory in the upcoming election. — Read the rest
The CIA long ago stopped trying to hide the fact that it regularly spies on Americans without a warrant. Every once in a while, a few congresspeople will feign concern, and the CIA will issue a bland statement that it obeys the law. — Read the rest
Vice's Motherboard reports that the US Secret Service paid for a product called Locate X that collects location data from tons of shady cell phone apps. It's the kind of information that you might not even realize you're giving away — that the app might not even tell you that it's collecting. — Read the rest
I loved Cory Doctorow's 2008 novel, Little Brother, and its 2013, sequel Homeland. Today, McMillan released both novels in one book, with a new introduction by Edward Snowden. Here's what Cory had to say about it on his blog Pluralistic:
— Read the rest
I wrote Little Brother after the AT&T; whistleblower Mark Klein walked into EFF's Shotwell St offices and revealed that his employer had built a secret NSA listening post inside its Folsom St switching enter.
The United States Internal Revenue Service says it purchased access to a marketing database that offers location data for millions of US cellphones, so the IRS can identify and track persons suspected of tax-related crimes.
The U.S. government spent $30 billion last month in stimulus payments last month to most healthcare providers that billed Medicare last year, part of the $2.3 trillion CARES Act passed by Congress to address the economic damage of the coronavirus pandemic.
Do Not Track was a standardized way for browsers to tell services that their owners did not consent to having their activities and usage logged; however, it was subverted by Big Tech and big media companies and turned into a useless tick-box that had virtually no impact on your privacy.