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The Big Questions About Privacy That Need Answers

I had a teacher who once said, “when the stuff is hitting the fan, there are three questions to ask: What’s important? What’s missing? And what’s next?” Members of Congress will have their day with Mark Zuckerberg this week, but I’m more interested in unpacking these three questions – and moving towards their answers.

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CDT’s 2018 Tech Resolutions

At CDT, we love technology, especially when it makes ours lives easier. While many here are among the first adopters of new technology, we also have our share of skeptics who bring a healthy dose of paranoia. This balance of perspectives makes our advocacy more thoughtful. And it means that when I asked the team what their tech resolutions for 2018 were, I received a wide range of answers. I received such great responses that I wanted to share them more broadly – I hope you enjoy them, and I would love to hear yours as well. Happy New Year everyone!

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3

ICANN Must Follow Its Own Rules

It is a fundamental underpinning of multistakeholderism that all parties are equal. Thus, government interests should not be elevated above individual or commercial interests when those interests are deemed legitimate after appropriate review and process.

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5

A United Front Against Collecting Passwords at the Border

CDT a letter to the Secretary of Homeland Security. CDT, along with a powerful coalition of civil society groups, academics, technical experts, and tech trade associations, strongly opposes any attempt by the government to collect social media passwords as a condition of entry to the United States. Such an approach would undermine human rights and personal security.

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6

Demanding Passwords at the Border Would Undermine Human Rights and Personal Security

Based on remarks by the Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, the U.S. government is considering taking advantage of the vulnerable moment when someone passes through border control to collect social media account passwords of non-citizens. The government cannot have access to people’s passwords simply because they cross the border. Full stop.

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7

The List-Building Has Begun: How the Tech Sector Should Respond

In a digital age of fluid boundaries between the individual, company, and state, it is imperative that companies defend the rights of their individual customers and take steps — whether in technology design or in institutional policy — to limit disclosure of personal data to the government. The list-building has begun, but companies must not become willing partners.

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8

Moving Forward On Our Shared Democratic Values

It is a time of uncertainty and anxiety around the world. The feeling of disorder is true even for those who celebrated the recent inauguration and those who marched to promote women’s rights or other important issues. With all this uncertainty, Nuala O’Connor reflects on the core principles that ground our advocacy work at CDT to help inform our course of action as we face new challenges.

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9

Global Dignity Falls with the Stroke of a Pen

With the stroke of a pen, the new Administration has erased an important principle — the extension of Privacy Act coverage to non-U.S. persons for data about them held by the federal government. This means that both U.S. and non-U.S. persons could request to see the information DHS held on them, such as details from an immigration application, details of a citizen’s comings and goings from the country, and interactions with the government. The message this action sends is clear: people who don’t hold a U.S. passport or current green card are not entitled to the same dignity as those of us who do.

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10

A Letter from Our President: We Have Work to Do

Like many of you, I have been reflecting on this unprecedented election, and where we — as a country and digital community — go from here. For CDT, our answer is simple: we roll up our sleeves and get back to work. Administrations and their priorities may change, but our commitment to ensuring that technology is a force for good will never waver.

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