Cybersecurity

Our world runs on computers and the Internet. We use them for everything, from communicating with long-lost classmates to managing our bank accounts to buying anything from cars to diapers. The effort to keep these systems secure is known as cybersecurity. Unfortunately, all too often, simple, effective cybersecurity steps are not taken, like changing passwords routinely or updating and patching holes in software. Even when they are, sophisticated hackers can sometimes get around these defenses. The government is using this threat to try to expand its power and permit companies to funnel our sensitive, personal online information to it. Learn more >>

Hotel Lock Security Vulnerability is Reminder of Government’s Ambiguous Role in Protecting Security

Hotel Lock Security Vulnerability is Reminder of Government’s Ambiguous Role in Protecting Security

By Chris Soghoian, Principal Technologist and Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project at 10:36am
This summer, at the Black Hat security conference, a security researcher presented details of a troubling security flaw: An electronic lock system, used in more than 4 million hotel rooms around the world, is vulnerable. The researcher, Cody Brocious, revealed that with less than $50 in electronic parts, a device can be built that will open one of the vulnerable locks in seconds. Just a few months after Brocious revealed the flaw, hotels in Texas reported a string of thefts by burglars from rooms, all protected by vulnerable locks.
Data Breach Raises Questions About NASA Policy At Issue in Recent Supreme Court Case

Data Breach Raises Questions About NASA Policy At Issue in Recent Supreme Court Case

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 4:35pm

We hate to say “I told you so.”

In 2010, the Supreme Court heard a case called NASA v. Nelson, which involved the government’s right to carry out highly intrusive background checks. NASA decided to require its employees—many…

The Political Effects of Conflating Separate Meanings of "Cybersecurity"

The Political Effects of Conflating Separate Meanings of "Cybersecurity"

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:25pm

Washington is in the midst of debating something called “cybersecurity.” But that term actually includes several very separate and distinct problems that call for very different solutions. Not only does conflating them confuse the issue…

The Patriot Act, Cyber-Edition

The Patriot Act, Cyber-Edition

By Josh Bell, Media Strategist, ACLU at 5:22pm

This week marks 10 years since the Patriot Act was signed into law by President George W. Bush. The ACLU is hosting a blog series that will address some of the sweeping changes to surveillance laws over the past decade. To learn more about the Patriot…

Data Tunnel

Cyberalarmism's Threat to Privacy

By Michelle Richardson, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:26pm

This piece originally ran on Al Jazeera America.

When members of Congress talk cybersecurity, it doesn’t take long for the discussion to turn apocalyptic. The Feb. 27 meeting of the Senate Intelligence Committee was no different when Lindsey…

Data Tunnel

CISPA's Problem Isn't Bad PR, It’s Bad Privacy

By Robyn Greene, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 11:28am

Representative Mike Rogers (R-MI) made the argument last week that the privacy community’s significant concerns with CISPA, the privacy-busting cybersecurity bill, don’t stem from actual problems with the bill language, but rather from a misunderstanding…

With CISPA, "It's all just a little bit of history repeating..."

With CISPA, "It's all just a little bit of history repeating..."

By Robyn Greene, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:48pm

The Propellerheads may have been talking about fashion trends when they sang that "to me it seems quite clear that it's all just a little bit of history repeating." But that sentiment rings loud and true today when talking about the privacy-busting…

ACLU to Congress: Keep Cybersecurity Information Sharing Out of Military Hands!

ACLU to Congress: Keep Cybersecurity Information Sharing Out of Military Hands!

By Robyn Greene, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:58pm

UPDATE: Due to a winter storm approaching Washington, D.C., tomorrow's House Homeland Security Committee hearing on cybersecurity has been postponed for a later date.

As Congress debates cybersecurity legislation, one of the most significant…

CISPA Claws Back to Life

CISPA Claws Back to Life

By Michelle Richardson, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:54pm

It's baa-aaack.

The House cybersecurity bill that allows the National Security Agency (NSA) and the military to collect your private internet records is scheduled for an encore appearance on Wednesday. House Intelligence Committee Chairman…

Civil Liberties in the Digital Age: Weekly Highlights (10/5/12)

Civil Liberties in the Digital Age: Weekly Highlights (10/5/12)

By Anna Salem, ACLU of Northern California at 3:50pm

In the digital age that we live in today, we are constantly exposing our personal information online. From using cell phones and GPS devices to online shopping and sending e-mail, the things we do and say online leave behind ever-growing trails of…

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