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White House Appoints Howard Schmidt ‘Cybersecurity Czar’

The Center for Democracy & Technology welcomes today's Presidential appointment of Howard Schmidt to be the White House’s first Cybersecurity chief.   CDT believes he brings the needed expertise to a critical new position. In May President Obama declared the nation's digital infrastructure a strategic national asset and pledged that his Administration would make protecting these networks a national…

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Ohio Court Extends 4th Amendment Protections To Cell Phones Seized in Arrests

A deeply divided  Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that cell phones contain such sensitive information that law enforcement cannot automatically examine their contents when the cell phone is seized from a person being arrested.  Instead, the court ruled 4-3 that the Fourth Amendment requires that the police first obtain a warrant based on probable cause before they look at…

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CDT’s Gregory Nojeim Profiled in CNET

Gregory Nojeim was profiled in CNET as part of a series of articled discussing how people in the tech industry are working with or around federal and state governments. It’s a great snapshot on the work being done within CDT’s Freedom, Security and Technology Project. 

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Feds on Your Friends Lists

CDT's Leslie Harris has a new guest blog post today on the Huffington Post.  The post discusses the risks to privacy when federal law enforcement officials troll social networking sites looking for information. Currently, the FBI and other agencies can search social networks "unchecked," as Harris puts it.  Social networks are so new that the laws on the books…

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Fusion Centers Get New Privacy Orders Via DHS Grants

Last Tuesday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the release of guidance for awarding grants for 2010. That Friday, the DHS Privacy Office publicly highlighted a provision of the guidance for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) grant program that relates to fusion centers. The grant program requires…

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Cybersecurity: What’s Next?

Everyone agrees: cybersecurity is a big problem. Computer hackers are stealing government secrets and millions of dollars. Consumers’ computers are being taken over unbeknownst to them and are being used to spread malicious computer code.  Everyone agrees: the status quo is untenable. Something has to be done about this problem, but there’s no silver bullet. Cybersecurity solutions will involve consumers, communications…

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Handy Patriot Act Comparison Chart

Kim Zetter from WIRED’s Threat Level Blog posted our Patriot Act Comparison Chart in an article yesterday.  The chart tracks the current Patriot Act laws as well as both the Senate and House versions by issue area.  Great resource and lots of thanks to our friends at Wired for pushing this out. Check out the chart here.

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