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Civil Liberties in the Digital Age: Weekly Highlights (6/15/2012)

Anna Salem,
ACLU of Northern California
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June 15, 2012

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 personal information. The ACLU believes that Americans shouldn’t have to choose between using new technology and keeping control of your private information. Each week, we feature some of the most interesting news related to technology and civil liberties that we’ve spotted from the previous week.

Lone Senator Blocks Renewal of NSA Wiretap Program [Wired – David Kravets]

“The Obama administration wanted a quick, no-questions-asked-or-answered renewal of broad electronic eavesdropping powers that largely legalized the Bush administration’s illegal warrantless wiretapping program…But Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) has stepped in to stop the bill because the government refuses to say how often the spy powers are being used.”

See Also Senate Committee Releases Report On FISA Reauthorization [ACLU – Michelle Richardson]

See Also Wyden & Udall Block FISA Amendments Act Until US Admits How Many Americans Are Being Spied On [techdirt]

Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Darrell Issa say they want a Bill of Rights to protect Web users against censorship and those that would limit their online freedoms [CNET – Greg Sandoval]

“The two lawmakers who spearheaded a protest in January against controversial antipiracy legislation said today that they want the country to adopt an Internet Bill of Rights.”

Senate bill aims to crack down on domestic drone surveillance [ars technica – Cyrus Farivar]

“On Tuesday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) introduced a bill in the United States Senate that would prohibit the domestic warrantless use of unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly identified as ‘drones.'”

See Also Sen. Paul Proposes Bill Requiring Warrants for Drone Use [Forbes – Greg McNeal]

Apple to Release New Tracking Tool for Apps [Wall Street Journal – Jessica E. Vascellaro]

“Apple Inc. is planning to release a new way for mobile app developers to track who uses their software, according to people briefed on Apple’s plans, the company’s latest attempt to balance developers’ appetite for targeting data with consumers’ unease over how it is used.”

What are the privacy requirements for the Facebook Exchange? [Privacy Choice]

“The new program, called Facebook Exchange, marks the first time that Facebook will permit systematic data use and collection by third-party trackers on Facebook pages (outside of Facebook apps, which Facebook does not supervise).”

See Also Facebook to auction users’ eyeballs in real time to advertisers [ars technica – Sean Gallagher]

Help EFF Find Out How Your Local Police Agency is Using Drones [EFF – Parker Higgins and Trevor Timm]

“Yet barely any information is known about what law enforcement agencies plan to do with these unmanned flying vehicles. So we want your help to gather this information into one place.”

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