Shadowproof Mailbag: Citizens United means we’re all “doing time” and only the 1% benefit from the law. Why we must bring Wall Street to justice. What the comic book fantasies of the intelligence community reveal about mass surveillance.
On September 3, the Justice Department announced a new policy which will require the FBI, Marshals Service, Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives to get a warrant when using Stingray surveillance in domestic crime investigations. But the new policy contains a potentially major “exceptional circumstances” loophole that is undefined and could fuel further abuses of privacy.
Today, a federal appeals court vacated a preliminary injunction against the National Security Agency’s phone records surveillance program, and the lawsuit was sent back to the lower court for further proceedings if appropriate. But the U.S. Court of Appeals did not rule on whether the program, exposed by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, was lawful or not.
New York City will begin a surveillance pilot program aimed at keeping juvenile defendants accused of committing certain felonies off of Rikers Island. As The New York Times reported on August 14, eligible youth between the ages of sixteen and eighteen will be outfitted with lightweight bracelets tethered electronically to smartphones that are to be carried with them at all times and cannot be turned off.
The modern work environment was already becoming more than a bit Orwellian, with employees being electronically spied on by their bosses to ensure productivity, but now the corporate push for total information awareness of workers is hitting new levels of creepiness. According to a report in Bloomberg, companies are now using biosurveillance technologies to monitor workers.
Yesterday, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charged data brokers with illegally selling payday loan applicants’ financial information to a scam operation that then fraudulently took at least $7.1 million from those customers’ bank accounts.
Kevin Gosztola interviews Duncan Campbell, recently published in The Intercept, about his 4 decades as a journalist dedicated to uncovering the surveillance state and the international ECHELON program. Campbell says less has changed for today’s journalists than you might think.
W3C’s specification explicitly frees sites from needing to ask user permission to discover they remaining battery life, arguing that “the information disclosed has minimal impact on privacy or fingerprinting, and therefore is exposed without permission grants”. But in a new paper from four French and Belgian security researchers, that assertion is questioned.
WikiLeaks shows the NSA spied on the phone calls of not only German Chancellor Angela Merkel but also officials in her office.