The press review catalogues press articles related to la Quadrature's issues, compiled by its volunteers.
See also our French press review.
The privacy campaigner who successfully challenged a treaty which allowed the data of millions of European citizens to be transferred to the US has warned he may take more cases.
Max Schrems is to have his groundbreaking complaint over the alleged movement of personal information by Facebook investigated by Ireland’s online watchdog after a near three-year fight. [...]
The campaigner said watchdogs in 28 European states will now be able to accept complaints about the movement of personal information. [...]
“The big question is going to be if the Irish Data Protection Commissioner is going to do its job,” he said.
“They pledged that they will really investigate things swiftly. My last experience was that a complaint takes up to three years and nothing comes out of it but they now pledge the opposite and I hope that’s going to be the case.”
Schrems warned it would be very hard for European and US authorities to create a new version of safe harbour based on the ECJ ruling.
“I think for the US on the one hand they would have to turn down their surveillance state and the only thing they would get is a little easier access to the European market,” he said.
“I doubt it is going to be possible to get a second Safe Harbour that also withstands another challenge at the ECJ … the court has been very clear a new Safe Harbour would have to give you the same rights as you have in Europe. That’s going to be hard to get a deal on.” [...]
The Investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT), the UK body that hears complaints about intelligence agencies, has ruled that the communications of MPs and peers are not protected by the Wilson Doctrine, which was thought to exempt them from surveillance by GCHQ and other intelligence agencies. Back in July, the UK government had already admitted that the Wilson Doctrine "cannot work sensibly" when mass surveillance is taking place, but today's decision goes further by explicitly rejecting the idea of any formal immunity from spying. [...]
The IPT justified its decision on the grounds that "MPs’ communications with their constituents and others are protected, like those of every other person, by the statutory regime established by Part 1 of RIPA 2000." But as Ars has noted before, the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) is a creaking legal framework for surveillance that was drawn up in the early days of the Internet as a widely-used medium, and is woefully inadequate for regulating GCHQ today when its aim is to track every visible user on the Internet. Saying that UK politicians have the same protections as anyone else may be true, but those protections are so weak as to be useless, as Edward Snowden's revelations have made abundantly clear. [...]
The Obama administration has backed down in its bitter dispute with Silicon Valley over the encryption of data on iPhones and other digital devices, concluding that it is not possible to give American law enforcement and intelligence agencies access to that information without also creating an opening that China, Russia, cybercriminals and terrorists could exploit. [...]
While the administration said it would continue to try to persuade companies like Apple and Google to assist in criminal and national security investigations, it determined that the government should not force them to breach the security of their products. [...]
Mr. Obama and his aides had come to fear that the United States could set a precedent that China and other nations would emulate, requiring Apple, Google and the rest of America’s technology giants to provide them with the same access, officials said. [...]
White House officials said they would continue trying to persuade technology companies to help them in investigations, but they did not specify how. [...]
After months of deliberation, the Obama administration has made a long-awaited decision on the thorny issue of how to deal with encrypted communications: It will not — for now — call for legislation requiring companies to decode messages for law enforcement.
Rather, the administration will continue trying to persuade companies that have moved to encrypt their customers’ data to create a way for the government to still peer into people’s data when needed for criminal or terrorism investigations. [...]
[P]rivacy advocates are concerned that the administration’s definition of strong encryption also could include a system in which a company holds a decryption key or can retrieve unencrypted communications from its servers for law enforcement. [...]
To Amie Stepanovich, the U.S. policy manager for Access, [...] the status quo isn’t good enough. “It’s really crucial that even if the government is not pursuing legislation, it’s also not pursuing policies that will weaken security through other methods,” she said. [...]
MPs’ and peers’ private communications are not protected from interception by the so-called Wilson doctrine that was widely thought to provide special privileges for parliamentarians, according to a court ruling. [...]
Downing Street described the Wilson doctrine first expressed in 1966 as a political statement, without legal force, and pointed out that the intelligence agencies might be monitoring an individual who was in contact with an MP. [...]
Matthew Rice, of Privacy International, said: “Today’s tribunal ruling that MPs should have no special protection from having their communications intercepted, confirms what Privacy International have been arguing for a long time: mass surveillance affects us all.”
“Anyone who has exchanged emails with their MP about a sensitive matter should be aware that government snoopers may have access to this personal information. From charity workers to politicians, lawyers to refugees, it is of great concern that the UK’s surveillance regime cannot function without interfering with everyone’s right to privacy, regardless of their need for professional confidentiality.”
Article that summarises the effects of the CJEU (Court of Justice of the European Union) on the Safe Harbour agreement. In particular, it points out that since the court makes appeal to the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, any future agreements, in particular TTIP (TAFTA) or TISA, would have to take these into consideration.
Facebook Inc. is gearing up to fight a cascade of privacy investigations in Europe, arguing that regulators are overreaching in ways that could hurt the social network’s ability to protect users against hacking and fraud. [...]
The two sides dispute whether the process is necessary for Facebook’s security. The firm says it uses the information from that cookie only to weed out browsers being piloted by a machine rather than a human, and discards the browsing data after 10 days. Machine-driven browsers are often used to hack into users’ Facebook pages, the company says. [...]
Belgium’s privacy commission however, says the cookie isn’t necessary to protect users. A spokeswoman declined to provide further details but referred instead to a research report which it commissioned that found Facebook was violating European privacy law. Facebook has disputed those conclusions.
The vast majority of Australian internet service providers (ISPs) are not ready to start collecting and storing metadata as required under the country's data retention laws which come into effect today. [...]
"The way that the legislation is drafted doesn't provide us with all of the detail about what exactly is required in all of their services.
There are a thousand different nuances that I've seen flying around as to what needs to be retained in respect of a particular service" [...]
Internet Australia, an organisation that represents internet users and also smaller ISPs, has called for an immediate review of the metadata laws. [...]
The National Security Agency is using complex analysis of electronic surveillance, rather than human intelligence, as the primary method to locate targets for lethal drone strikes – an unreliable tactic that results in the deaths of innocent or unidentified people. [...]
[T]he NSA often locates drone targets by analyzing the activity of a SIM card, rather than the actual content of the calls. Based on his experience, he has come to believe that the drone program amounts to little more than death by unreliable metadata. [...]
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism, which uses a conservative methodology to track drone strikes, estimates that at least 273 civilians in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia have been killed by unmanned aerial assaults under the Obama administration. [...]
There is a saying at the NSA: ‘SIGINT never lies.’ It may be true that SIGINT never lies, but it’s subject to human error.” [...]
Whether or not Obama is fully aware of the errors built into the program of targeted assassination, he and his top advisors have repeatedly made clear that the president himself directly oversees the drone operation and takes full responsibility for it. Obama once reportedly told his aides that it “turns out I’m really good at killing people.” [...]
The government’s electronic eavesdropping agency GCHQ spied illegally on Amnesty International, according to the tribunal responsible for handling complaints against the intelligence services. [...]
Responding to the revelation, Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s secretary general, said: “It’s outrageous that what has been often presented as being the domain of despotic rulers has been done on British soil, by the British government. [...]
“After 18 months of litigation and all the denials and subterfuge that entailed, we now have confirmation that we were in fact subjected to UK government mass surveillance. The revelation that the UK government has been spying on Amnesty International highlights the gross inadequacies in the UK’s surveillance legislation.
“If they hadn’t stored our communications for longer than they were allowed to, we would never even have known. What’s worse, this would have been considered perfectly lawful.” [...]
The organisation is calling for an independent inquiry into how and why a UK intelligence agency has been spying on human rights organisations. [...]