Free Future

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ACLU Seeks Information About Airborne Cell Phone Snooping

By Bennett Stein, ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project at 7:59am
The ACLU is filing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request today for information about a newly revealed Marshals Service program that uses aircraft to suck up location data from tens of thousands of people’s cell phones at a time.
Telephone by Vincent AF via Flickr

Americans' Confidence in Privacy of Electronic Communications is Very Low

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 5:16pm

Pew has a new poll out on Americans’ attitudes toward privacy, and it is full of interesting findings. A New York Times blog piece on the poll focused on the so-called “privacy paradox”—people’s seeming willingness to share personal information…

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Keep it Simple With Net Neutrality

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:58pm

Chairman Tom Wheeler at the Federal Communications Commission is moving in the right direction toward true net neutrality. He deserves some plaudits for abandoning the deeply flawed proposal put forward last May, which would have allowed broadband…

The Government is in Pursuit of a Less Secure Internet

The Government is in Pursuit of a Less Secure Internet

By Nathan Freed Wessler, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:49pm

A government proposal to change the rules for obtaining search warrants risks making all of us more vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

The FBI wants to be able to infect computers with malware when it doesn't know where exactly they're located. The…

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Louisiana Blocks Ebola Scientists From Meeting in New Orleans in Latest Counterproductive Over-Reaction

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 10:30am

The state of Louisiana has informed the organizers of a scientific conference that Ebola researchers who have recently returned from West Africa would not be permitted to travel to New Orleans for the conference—and would be quarantined if they showed…

Jetliner landing

Ebola: Travel Bans, Quarantines, and Political Courage

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:05am

The political reaction to Ebola has been a study in contrasts. On the one hand, we see some leaders insecurely trying to prove their “Ebola-fighting bona fides” by racing to go beyond what public health experts recommend. Some are actually fanning…

FTC Needs to Make Sure Companies Aren’t Using Big Data to Discriminate

FTC Needs to Make Sure Companies Aren’t Using Big Data to Discriminate

By Rachel Goodman, Staff Attorney, ACLU Racial Justice Program at 2:45pm

The ACLU filed comments today with the FTC urging it and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to investigate whether big data is being used in online marketing in ways that are racially discriminatory. If companies are in fact engaging in this…

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On the Creation of Giant Voiceprint Databases

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:50am

The Associated Press ran a story (along with two sidebars) this week on the use of voiceprints by big banks and other institutions. Those companies say they are using the technology to fight fraud, but in the process they are apparently compiling large…

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Treat Ebola as a Public Health Issue, Not a National Security Matter

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 1:09pm

Since the government announced the introduction of new Ebola screening measures at border checkpoints at five U.S. airports, we’ve been getting queries asking what our position is on such measures from a civil liberties standpoint.

This is…

Facebook Apologizes for Real Name Policy’s Impact, But No Real Changes Yet

Facebook Apologizes for Real Name Policy’s Impact, But No Real Changes Yet

By Matthew Cagle, Technology and Civil Liberties Policy Fellow, ACLU of Northern California at 9:30am

Wednesday the ACLU, along with a coalition of partner organizations, went to Facebook to urge it to fix a flawed policy that requires users to speak in a voice other than the one they prefer.

Facebook’s current “real name” policy requires…