Stories

Magistrate Judge in Chicago Sets Stage for Challenging “Geofence” Warrant Constitutionality

According to a report in Wired, a magistrate judge based in Chicago has called the constitutionality of expansive location-based search warrants into question for the first time. In a July ruling that was only recently unsealed, judge M. David … Read more »

Federal Court Finds NSA Metadata Program Illegal

According to Politico, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that a former NSA call metadata collection program violated US law. In its unanimous decision, the appeals court found the authorizations of the NSA’s so-called “bulk collection” … Read more »

Under Pretext of Protecting Children, EARN IT Act Puts Encryption in Its Crosshairs

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) recently published a blog post warning of a new proposed bill in the US Senate which could effectively coerce online services and platforms into compromising their users’ encryption. If passed, the EARN IT Act, … Read more »

Civil Libertarians Forewarn of Breathtaking Surveillance Expansion to Combat COVID-19

A new article by The Washington Post notes a mounting fear among civil liberties defenders that the US government could take steps to establish or expand surveillance programs as a means of addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Although neither members of … Read more »

Leading Contact Tracing Initiative Offers Insufficient Assurance Against Abuse

Not long after the first wave of states imposed shelter-in-place orders to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, public discourse coalesced around initiatives which proposed harnessing technology to stem the spread of the virus. 

In particular, public health experts in the United … Read more »

DHS Reportedly Arrested Suspects Pinpointed with Purchased Location Data

Earlier this month, The Verge reported that the Department of Homeland Security purchased location data for an unspecified number of individuals in the US-Mexico border region. DHS reviewed a swath of historical location data for those whose data indicated they … Read more »

DHS Announces Plan to Collect DNA of Immigrants During Border Searches

According to a piece published last month by The Verge, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is moving forward with a plan to collect DNA samples from individuals detained by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs … Read more »

Facial Recognition Adoption Remains Unchecked Even as Government Warns of Anti-Minority Bias

A new piece by Motherboard reports that the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has issued a warning that facial recognition technology remains dangerously biased against those of non-white racial backgrounds, women, and other historically marginalized groups. Specifically, … Read more »

California Legislature Passes Three-Year Ban on Facial Recognition Use with Police Body Cameras

Last week, the California State Assembly passed a bill that would bar any law enforcement agency in the state from using facial recognition technology in conjunction with body cameras for a period of three years. The bill, passed by a … Read more »

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