Content Types

Fair Information Practices

This formulation of a code of fair information practices is derived from several sources, including codes developed by the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (1973), Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (1980), and the Council of Europe (1981).

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Privacy Best Practices for Deployment of RFID Technology

Creative applications of radio frequency identification (“RFID”) technologies hold promise for consumers, businesses and government. They suggest possibilities for reducing costs through better inventory management, for improving the safety of the drug supply, for aiding in the care of the elderly and impaired, for reducing error rates in hospitals and for improved tracking of luggage and cargo at airports to improve security and passenger service, among other applications.

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Pennsylvania Web Blocking

On September 9, 2003, the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), together with the ACLU of Pennsylvania and Plantagenet, Inc., a Pennsylvania ISP, filed a constitutional challenge to a Pennsylvania statute that blocked access to Internet sites accused of carrying child pornography and that resulted in the blocking of wholly innocent websites. Almost exactly one year later, on September 10, 2004, the court struck down the statute as violating the First Amendment and the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

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USA Patriot Act and other Security Issues

Terrorism is testing our nation’s collective resolve to maintain the freedom, openness and diversity that defines and enriches our society. CDT believes that surrendering freedom will not purchase security, that democratic values are strengths not weaknesses, and that open communications networks are a positive force in the fight against violence and intolerance. PATRIOT Re-Authorization CRS, “USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization…

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Patriot Act Overview

Congress has begun considering whether to renew or amend the PATRIOT Act, 16 provisions of which expire on December 31, 2005 unless reauthorized by Congress. This page is intended to provide the most up-to-date information on the legislative debate.

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Rise of Telecommuting Poses Unique Privacy and Security Threats to Company Networks

Telecommuting, a practice increasingly favored by employers and workers alike, has a great deal to recommend it, but it also raises serious new privacy and security threats that must be addressed in order to prevent this generally beneficial practice from leading to serious privacy and security failures. CDT joined Ernst & Young to survey employers about telecommuting and to identify the best practices and areas of weakness. (1)…

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Investigative Guidelines Cement FBI Role As Domestic Intelligence Agency, Raising New Privacy Challenges

Guidelines for Domestic FBI Operations signed on September 29, 2008 by Attorney General Mukasey significantly expand the authority of the FBI to use intrusive investigative techniques to collect information about innocent Americans. In the past, the FBI could use these techniques – tasking informants, pretext interviews, and physical surveillance – only when it had some suspicion of criminal activity or a threat to national security relating to…

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Online Behavioral Advertising: Discussing the ISP-Ad Network Model

The practice of "behavioral advertising" involves the compilation of detailed information about an Internet user’s online activities for the purpose of sending them targeted online advertisements. In the traditional behavioral advertising model, online ad networks contract with many different Web site publishers on one side and many different advertisers on the other, placing ads online according to the context of the Web page content and expected audience. However, as…

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