Blog of Rights

Spying

What’s the Government Doing Targeting Civil Rights Leaders?

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:11pm

The NSA and FBI are targeting prominent American Muslims, including civil rights activists, academics, and a former government official, we learned in a troubling report released last night.

Their emails have been stored, their movements have…

NSA

Dear Privacy Board: It’s Us, the 95%

By Naureen Shah, ACLU Legislative Counsel at 3:07pm

There are seven billion people in the world, and 95 percent of them live outside the United States. We know from dozens of revelations from the last year that few, if any, are immune from the watchful eyes of the National Security Agency.

Yet…

Victory: No Fly List Process Ruled Unconstitutional

Victory: No Fly List Process Ruled Unconstitutional

By Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project & Hugh Handeyside, Staff Attorney, ACLU National Security Project at 12:00am

A secret government watchlist that traps innocent Americans in a Kafkaesque nightmare was dealt a major blow yesterday.

A federal court in Oregon struck down as unconstitutional the government's system for challenging inclusion on the No Fly…

Abdulrahman Al-Aulaqi, a teenage boy with combed hair wearing glasses, smiling

Relative of Americans Killed by Drone Strikes: No Justice in U.S. Courts

By Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project at 1:29pm

Having lost faith in the ability of U.S. courts to provide justice and accountability for their relatives' deaths, the family members of three U.S. citizens killed by drone strikes in Yemen in 2011 have decided not to appeal a court decision dismissing…

A Platform to Build Real NSA Reform

A Platform to Build Real NSA Reform

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:57pm

The piece below was first published as part of the New York Times Room for Debate feature "Reining in the N.S.A.," which used this conversation starter:

Last week the House voted to limit the National Security Agency's sweeping collection…

Why Are We Throwing MORE Money at Guantánamo?

Why Are We Throwing MORE Money at Guantánamo?

By Zak Newman, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:48pm

At a price tag of more than $4.8 billion since opening, the prison facility at Guantánamo Bay has long been both a moral and financial catastrophe. But the National Defense Authorization Act – headed to the floor of the House of Representatives…

Calling Abroad? Then Your Privacy Rights May Be "Eliminated"

Calling Abroad? Then Your Privacy Rights May Be "Eliminated"

By Jameel Jaffer, ACLU Deputy Legal Director and Director of ACLU Center for Democracy at 10:14am

Modern American privacy law begins with Charles Katz, an accused gambler, making a call from a Los Angeles phone booth. In a now-famous opinion, Justice John Marshall Harlan concluded that the US Constitution protected Katz's "expectation of privacy"…

Crop of image by luc legay via Flickr

An Important Review of Big Data

By Chris Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:41am

Yesterday John Podesta, the president’s senior adviser, released a highly anticipated report addressing how the administration should tackle the challenges of big data in coming years. So how’d he do? Pretty well, actually. The report recognizes…

Appeals Court Rules Government Can't Have It Both Ways on Targeted Killing

Appeals Court Rules Government Can't Have It Both Ways on Targeted Killing

By Brett Max Kaufman, Legal Fellow, ACLU National Security Project at 4:49pm

In an important opinion issued today in the ACLU's ongoing litigation surrounding the government's targeted killing program, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit roundly rejected the government's extreme claims of official secrecy over…