Blog of Rights

This Bill Is Mandating Perfect Border Security, Using Your Tax Dollars, Without a Plan.

This Bill Is Mandating Perfect Border Security, Using Your Tax Dollars, Without a Plan.

By Chris Rickerd, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 9:55am
Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, last year proposed a logical approach to border security: In rejecting measures to put the "cart" of border spending before the "horse" of measuring what resources are needed, he introduced legislation that, in his own words, "demands a plan, verified by outside experts, before one dollar is spent on new resources."
Beware the Dangers of Congress’ Latest Cybersecurity Bill

Beware the Dangers of Congress’ Latest Cybersecurity Bill

By Sandra Fulton, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:52pm

A new cybersecurity bill poses serious threats to our privacy, gives the government extraordinary powers to silence potential whistleblowers, and exempts these dangerous new powers from transparency laws.

The Cybersecurity Information Sharing…

Virginia State Police Used License Plate Readers At Political Rallies, Built Huge Database

Virginia State Police Used License Plate Readers At Political Rallies, Built Huge Database

By Rebecca Glenberg, Legal Director, ACLU of Virginia at 5:14pm

From 2010 until last spring, the Virginia State Police (VSP) maintained a massive database of license plates that allowed them to pinpoint the locations of millions of cars on particular dates and times. Even more disturbing, the agency used automatic…

How US Prison Officials Rubber-Stamped a CIA Torture Chamber

How US Prison Officials Rubber-Stamped a CIA Torture Chamber

By Carl Takei, ACLU National Prison Project at 3:43pm

The CIA's chief interrogator called it "the closest thing he has seen to a dungeon."

At the agency's COBALT detention site in Afghanistan – also known as the "Salt Pit" – detainees were kept in total darkness, shackled to the floors or…

The Horrific Stories of CIA-sponsored Torture That Aren’t in the Senate Report.

The Horrific Stories of CIA-sponsored Torture That Aren’t in the Senate Report.

By Steven M. Watt, Senior Staff Attorney, ACLU Human Rights Program at 1:46pm

This piece originally appeared at Slate.

As bad as the stories in the Senate torture report are, there is a whole class of victims who aren't even mentioned. The executive summary released last week makes only passing reference to an integral…

ACLU ED Anthony D. Romero and filmmaker Laura Poitras

"CITIZENFOUR": The Evolution of Whistleblower Edward Snowden

By Anthony D. Romero, Executive Director, ACLU at 3:56pm

Filmmaker Laura Poitras, director of CITIZENFOUR, sits down with Anthony Romero, ACLU executive director, to discuss her film, the surveillance state, and Edward Snowden.

Anthony Romero: Your film offers an understanding of Ed Snowden and the…

Photo of Stingray from U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Documents Reveal Unregulated Use of Stingrays in California

By Linda Lye, Staff Attorney, ACLU of Northern California at 4:37pm

Local law enforcement agencies across the Bay Area have so-called stingray devices, a powerful cellphone surveillance tool, and more are planning to acquire the technology, according to public records recently obtained by Sacramento News10. The devices…

filing cabinet

U.S. Marshals Seize Local Cops’ Cell Phone Tracking Files in Extraordinary Attempt to Keep Information From Public

By Nathan Freed Wessler, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:13pm

A run-of-the-mill public records request about cell phone surveillance submitted to a local police department in Florida has unearthed blatant violations of open government laws, including an incredible seizure of state records by the U.S. Marshals…

NSA Spy Target Challenges Warrantless Wiretapping Law

NSA Spy Target Challenges Warrantless Wiretapping Law

By Patrick C. Toomey, Staff Attorney, ACLU National Security Project at 4:36pm

The ACLU today joined a new challenge to the constitutionality of the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 (FAA) — the surveillance law that gives the NSA virtually unfettered access to the international phone calls and emails of U.S. citizens and residents.…

Today at the Supreme Court: The Right to Challenge Warrantless Wiretapping

Today at the Supreme Court: The Right to Challenge Warrantless Wiretapping

By Mitra Ebadolahi, Border Litigation Staff Attorney, ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties at 6:26pm

The ACLU appeared before the Supreme Court to argue for the right of Americans to challenge a law that instituted a far-reaching and unconstitutional surveillance regime.