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FCC Rules Reconcile Speech and Privacy, Must Support Security Research

Last week, CDT submitted its second set of comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as it considers a new rulebook for protecting consumer privacy in the use of broadband. The FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on this issue is an important first step towards providing broadband consumers with the assurance they need that their ISP will not track their online activities – the websites they frequent, the apps they download, the searches they perform – or sell that information to third parties without their knowledge and consent. CDT previously submitted comments in this rulemaking process.

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GNI Finds Member Companies In Compliance with Obligations

The Global Network Initiative released a report on the independent assessments of its member companies, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft and Yahoo!, finding each company in compliance with the GNI Principles and Implementation Guidelines. The assessments amount to a demanding inquiry into company practices and processes as they relate to decision making about free expression and privacy.

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Think Differentially: Apple's Forward-Thinking Approach to Privacy in iOS 10

In the technology world, good design is driven by data, and companies often have to think critically about trade-offs between usability and privacy. Apple, which has been consistently innovative in its product design and in its approach to privacy, will deploy a technique known as differential privacy in iOS. Differential privacy allows user data to be examined in aggregate without revealing anything about a specific individual’s behavior.

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How Not to Be a Jerk with Your Drone

In 2015, President Obama established a multi-stakeholder engagement process to ensure that privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties concerns are considered and addressed as drones are integrated into the airspace. The process culminated in a final consensus document supported by a diverse group. The gist of the consensus document is simple: don’t be a jerk with your drone. In fact, several of the document’s suggestions are easy, commonsense ways for drone operators to ensure that they use their devices in an ethical, safe way that is respectful of fellow members of society.

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Two Factors are Better Than One

You may have heard how important it is to have a strong password. However, passwords can still be stolen or an attacker can scam you into giving them your password. To guard against this threat, many websites now offer multi-factor authentication. While different sites may refer to this feature differently, such as two-step login or two-factor sign-in or even login approvals, it has the same goal: to keep you safer online.

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Expansion of Secret National Security Letters – A Poison Pill for Email Privacy

Initially meant as a very limited investigative tool in financial cases, national security letter (NSL) authority has morphed into a frequently used, and abused, way by which the FBI can secure telephone records in terrorism or espionage cases without going to a judge. The FBI is pushing for a dramatic expansion of NSL authority, and is trying to sneak it into non-controversial email privacy legislation or a “must-pass” intelligence spending bill.

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Illinois Bill Repealing Biometric Protections is an Unnecessary Privacy Loss

Biometric information — data that pertains to an individual’s biological characteristics, like facial recognition patterns, DNA, fingerprints, and iris scans — is some of the most sensitive data about each of us, in part because it is generally immutable. You can get a new email address, but getting a new genome is a lot harder. It’s for these reasons that we’ve consistently argued for limited collection of biometric information, and strong protections for its use and retention. Illinois, which has one of the the country’s strongest state biometric privacy laws on the books, may soon significantly weaken its protections. We hope the Illinois Legislature doesn’t take such a misguided step.

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CDT and Berkeley Research Reveals Important Insight into Fairness in Online Personalization

Personalization is the gold standard of modern business models. These days, every service aims to provide an individually tailored experience that anticipates the preferences and needs of customers (and potential customers), hoping to establish loyalty in a competitive environment for consumer attention. Advertisements, search results, and even prices are among the content altered to maximize relevance for each user…

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