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Pennsylvania Is Taking Election Security Seriously

This time last year, Pennsylvania received a horrible grade in the Center for American Progress report on Election Security in All 50 States. Over the last year, the state has made significant improvements. More states can benefit from the approach that Pennsylvania took to developing its election security plan. Convening a diverse panel of experts to adapt industry best practices for local needs, and then codifying them into a series of recommendations, provides lawmakers with a blueprint for developing a long-term strategy.

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European Court of Human Rights to Reexamine Bulk Collection

On February 5, the European Court of Human Rights announced that the Grand Chamber will reexamine two cases that challenged the United Kingdom and Sweden’s bulk interception regimes. The minimum safeguards adopted in past ECtHR case law were unevenly applied between the two cases, resulting in confusion about what standards should govern bulk interception regimes. We hope the Grand Chamber will determine that bulk interception is not human rights-respecting, and that if it does not, that it will require robust safeguards that protect the privacy rights of those subject to these types of regimes.

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A “Smart Wall” That Fails to Protect Privacy and Civil Liberties Is Not Smart

Congress needs to be smart about this “smart wall.” CBP’s history of grossly mismanaging technology projects, and its liberal use of surveillance tools beyond the physical border, caution against a hands-off approach. Any funding Congress provides to invasive border surveillance technologies should be conditioned on efficacy requirements and limitations on use that are designed to preserve the human and civil rights of those against whom they will be used.

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CBP’s Border Searches Struggle to Comply with Constitution and Agency Policy

An Inspector General audit of Custom and Border Protection’s controversial border searches of electronic devices revealed that the agency overwhelmingly struggles to conduct searches that comport with the Constitution and agency protocol. In 2019, CDT will encourage Congress to take an active role on this issue and will encourage the passage of legislation protecting the privacy of all travelers at the border as well as the inclusion of further transparency requirements.

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Dockless Mobility Pilots Let Cities Scoot Away with Sensitive Data

Dockless mobility services generate a tremendous amount of data that can potentially improve transportation infrastructure, and cities like Detroit and Los Angeles are racing to create new data standards to collect and analyze mobility data. Building on our earlier work on government data demands, CDT has called on transportation authorities to adopt clear and robust privacy and security safeguards. These policies should build off of longstanding Fair Information Practices, include appropriate access controls, and address the availability of mobility data to researchers.

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Data Provided to HHS to Vett Sponsors of Unaccompanied Children Should Not Be Repurposed for Immigration Enforcement

Information originally provided in connection with the sponsorship of an unaccompanied minor entering the U.S. without lawful status is being used to remove the sponsor (or family members) from the U.S. CDT joined 112 organizations to demand that DHS and HHS stop the inhumane and illegal policy of questioning vulnerable immigrant children about their family and using that information to find, arrest, and try to deport their parents and relatives when they come forward to assume responsibility for the children.

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