Blog of Rights

Catherine
Crump

Catherine Crump (@CatherineNCrumpclerked for the Hon. M. Margaret McKeown, a judge on U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, prior to joining the ACLU. Crump graduated from Stanford University and Stanford Law School. She is a non-residential fellow with the Stanford Center for Internet and Society.

Justice Department Avoids Decision On Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking

Justice Department Avoids Decision On Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 3:04pm
Federal law enforcement has used people’s cell phones to track their movements for at least a decade, but even today there is no clear answer to whether the government needs a warrant to do so. Why? In part because the U.S. Justice Department appears to be pursuing a conscious strategy of trying to avoid a ruling on this question by a court of appeals.

Standing Up to Internet Censorship

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 2:01pm

In two different cases this week, the ACLU will be in court arguing that the government has unconstitutionally censored the Internet. Ever since the Supreme Court issued a fractured opinion on Internet filtering in 2003, when nine justices wrote…

ACLU Files Brief Against Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 2:27pm

Today the ACLU, the ACLU of Connecticut and the Electronic Frontier Foundation once again took a stand against warrantless cell phone tracking, in a friend-of-the-court brief submitted to a federal judge in Connecticut. Cell phones are not just…

Don't Restrict Adults to Protect Kids

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 1:43pm

(Originally posted on The Agonist.)

There are few cases addressing whether libraries may block patrons’ access to portions of the Internet. An ACLU of Washington case that will be before the Washington State Supreme Court this spring raises this issue, and is a case to watch. We recently filed our brief in the case, and just received word that the Court will hear argument on June 23.

At stake is whether libraries are free to use Internet filtering software to block adults’ access to constitutionally protected speech. The defendant, a consortium of 23 public libraries, has a policy of blocking access to all speech it considers inappropriate for children. One of our clients, the gun rights group the Second Amendment Foundation, joined the lawsuit because the libraries went so far as to block all websites about firearms, including one of the advocacy organization’s own websites.

In the name of protecting kids, the library has blocked access to a great deal of speech that is indisputably protected by both the Washington and federal constitutions. Other clients in the case are adult patrons of the libraries whose efforts to do research online have been frustrated by the libraries’ filter. For example, Sarah Bradburn was prevented from accessing websites about youth tobacco usage that she needed to complete a school assignment.

New York Court Decision Highlights Yet Another Shortcoming In Nation’s Outdated Electronic Privacy Laws

New York Court Decision Highlights Yet Another Shortcoming In Nation’s Outdated Electronic Privacy Laws

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 1:02pm

A recent cell phone tracking case from New York is both a win and loss for privacy. In People v. Moorer, police officers submitted an emergency or “exigent circumstances” request to a phone company asking it to ping (locate) a cell phone—but…

ACLU Seeks FBI Guidance Memos on GPS Tracking

ACLU Seeks FBI Guidance Memos on GPS Tracking

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 2:00pm

Is the FBI attaching GPS devices to cars, boats and planes and tracking them without a warrant? Even in the wake of the Supreme Court’s January decision in United States v. Jones, holding that attaching a GPS device to a car is covered by the Fourth…

Monitoring Internet Usage Patterns Has Privacy Implications Too

Monitoring Internet Usage Patterns Has Privacy Implications Too

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 4:34pm

The New York Times Sunday Review included a striking op ed suggesting that universities could one day deploy software to analyze students’ internet usage for the purpose of assessing their mental health. The writers, Sriram Chellappan and Raghavendra…

Judge Rules in Favor of Bradley Manning Supporter and Allows Lawsuit Challenging Laptop Search

Judge Rules in Favor of Bradley Manning Supporter and Allows Lawsuit Challenging Laptop Search

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 12:43pm

The ACLU charges David House's laptop, camera and a USB drive were confiscated at O'Hare airport in 2010 because of his association with the Bradley Manning Support Network.

Surveillance Drones Coming to a Police Department Near You

Surveillance Drones Coming to a Police Department Near You

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 5:51pm

If there had been any doubt about drones being used for aerial surveillance inside the U.S., those doubts were dispelled when Congress passed and the president signed a law requiring the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to integrate drones…

Judge to Feds: To Track Cell Phones, Get a Warrant

Judge to Feds: To Track Cell Phones, Get a Warrant

By Catherine Crump, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 3:33pm

In a victory for the privacy rights of everyone with a cell phone, a court has held that law enforcement agents must get a warrant to access cell phone location records. The ACLU, ACLU of Texas and Electronic Frontier Foundation submitted a brief…

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