Related Insights

Comments to NTIA Promoting Stakeholder Action Against Botnets and Other Automated Threats

CDT appreciates this opportunity to comment on the Department of Commerce’s draft Report on enhance resilience against botnets and other automated, distributed threats. Because there is an explicit tension between allowing companies to take voluntary but automated action against devices and accounts, and permitting consumers to control their digital footprint, we propose that the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) convene a dedicated process for discussing the implications for privacy and freedom of expression.

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FOIA Request for ICE on Commercial License Plate Reader Database

The United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency recently issued a contract request for query-based access to a commercial license plate reader database. We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with ICE seeking information on the contract, as well as any internal training materials, policy memos, and documents related to how ICE agents plan to use the commercial database and LPR data.

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Coalition Letter Opposing DHS Social Media Retention

A coalition of civil liberties organizations, including CDT, wrote to the Department of Homeland Security to express concerns with the DHS System of Records Notice, issued on September 18, 2017 that states that DHS will now store social media information in ‘Alien Files’, which include the official record of an individual’s visa and immigration history. Alien registration numbers, and their related A-File, are assigned to people who plan to make the United States their home, and also to certain categories of non-immigrants who are granted employment authorization.

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Coalition Letter Calling for Improvements to USA Liberty Act

CDT and dozens of other digital rights groups released a letter calling on Congress to improve the USA Liberty Act by closing the backdoor search loophole that the bill leavers open. Using this loophole, the US government searches the communications content of US persons without obtaining a warrant. It does this by combing through the millions of communications it seizes every year under the authority Congress gave it in Section 702 of FISA to conduct surveillance of foreigners outside the U.S.

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Letter to Congress Re: FISA Section 702 Reauthorization – What We Know Now

The undersigned civil rights, civil liberties, privacy, and government oversight organizations write to urge you to vote “no” on reauthorization of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act if it is not significantly reformed. While Congress had little information on how this program worked when it last voted on this law in 2012, the new disclosures we describe below underscore the need for amendments to better protect privacy and civil liberties.

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CDT Supreme Court Amicus Brief in Carpenter v. US

This fall, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in Carpenter v. U.S., a case to determine whether the 4th Amendment requires law enforcement to obtain a warrant to access location data held by a cell phone company. In this case, the government obtained four months of stored location records with a less protective court order while investigating a robbery.

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CDT's Complaint to the FTC on Hotspot Shield VPN

CDT asks the FTC to investigate the data security and data sharing practices of Hotspot Shield Free Virtual Private Network (VPN) services, a product of AnchorFree, Inc. Hotspot Shield Free VPN promises secure, private, and anonymous access to the internet. This complaint concerns undisclosed and unclear data sharing and traffic redirection occurring in Hotspot Shield Free VPN that should be considered unfair and deceptive trade practices under Section 5 of the FTC Act.

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