[Admin] Red Alert for Net Neutrality

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EFFector Vol. 31, No. 7 Monday, May 7, 2018 editor@eff.org

A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
ISSN 1062-9424

effector: n, Computer Sci. A device for producing a
desired change.

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In our 733rd issue:

* Red Alert: Tell Congress to Use the Congressional Review Act to Restore the Open Internet Order
In December, the FCC voted to end the 2015 Open Internet Order, which
prevented Internet service providers (ISPs) like AT&T and Comcast from
violating net neutrality principles. A simple majority vote in Congress can
keep the FCC’s decision from going into effect. From now until the Senate
votes, EFF, along with a coalition of organizations, companies, and websites,
is on red alert and calling on you to tell Congress to vote to restore the
Open Internet Order.

Read more: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/05/red-alert-net-neutralirty-tell-congress-save-open-internet-order

* Bring in the Nerds: EFF Introduces Actual Encryption Experts to U.S. Senate Staff
On May 3, in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, EFF convened a closed-door
briefing for Senate staff about the realities of device encryption. While
policymakers hear frequently from the FBI and the Department of Justice about
the dangers of encryption and the so-called Going Dark problem, they very
rarely hear from actual engineers, cryptographers, and computer scientists.
EFF's panelists included Dr. Matt Blaze, professor of computer science at the
University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Susan Landau, professor of cybersecurity and
policy at Tufts University; Erik Neuenschwander, Apple’s manager of user
privacy; and EFF’s tech policy director Dr. Jeremy Gillula.

The discussion focused on renewed calls by the FBI and DOJ to create
mechanisms to enable “exceptional access” to encrypted devices. Our goal
was to give a technical description of how device encryption actually works
and answer staff questions about the risks that exceptional access mechanisms
necessarily introduce into the ecosystem. EFF's Gillula went last and
concluded that in the cat-and-mouse game that is computer security, mandating
exceptional access would freeze the defenders’ state of the art, while
allowing attackers to progress without limit.

Read more: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/05/bring-nerds-eff-introduces-actual-encryption-experts-us-senate-staff

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EFF Updates

* A Tale of Two Poorly Designed Cross-Border Data Access Regimes
Recently, the European Commission published two legislative proposals that
could further cement an unfortunate trend towards privacy erosion in
cross-border state investigati­ons. Building on a foundation first
established by the recently enacted U.S. CLOUD Act, these proposals compel
tech companies and service providers to ignore critical privacy obligations
in order to facilitate easy access when facing data requests from foreign
governments. These initiatives collectively signal the increasing willingness
of states to sacrifice privacy as a way of addressing pragmatic challenges in
cross-border access that could be better solved with more training and
streamlined processes.


* Math Can’t Solve Everything: Questions We Need To Be Asking Before Deciding an Algorithm is the Answer
Before rushing to employ algorithms to make decisions, companies should begin
by asking five questions:

  1) Will this algorithm influence—or serve as the basis of—decisions with
     the potential to negatively impact people’s lives?
  2) Can the available data actually lead to a good outcome?
  3) Is the algorithm fair?
  4) How will the results (really) be used by humans?
  5) Will people affected by these decisions have any influence over the


* Why Am I Getting All These Terms of Service Update Emails?
Europe's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force on May
25th, and most companies that have users in Europe are scrambling to update
their privacy policies and terms of service to avoid breaking this new EU
law. It's still an open question whether the rules apply to users living
outside the EU, but the changes involve refinements in terminology, how
companies need to get permission to use data, and changes in user ability to
look at the data itself, change it, and take it with them when they leave.


* The Big Lie ISPs Are Spreading in State Legislatures Is That They Don’t Make Enough Money
ISPs claim that the net neutrality principle banning paid
prioritization—where an ISP charges websites and applications new fees and
relegate those that do not pay to the slow lane—means that they cannot make
enough money to upgrade and extend their service. We know this isn't true
because the majority of costs for ISPs are in the initial building of their
networks, which they have already recouped. And we've recently seen new ISPs
build high-speed Internet networks turn a profit relatively quickly while
adhering to net neutrality.


* Mashup Maker: Another Entry for the Catalog of Missing Devices From an EFF Supporter
Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act makes tampering with
"Digital Rights Management" a legal no-go zone. This scares off inventors and
tinkerers from building new tools that should be perfectly legal. EFF details
examples of these non-existent technologies in the Catalogue of Missing
Devices. EFF supporter Benjamin McLean offered up his "Mashup Maker" as an
example. This program would have ripped tracks legally acquired and imported
them into a personal library with a built-in editor, making it easier for
people to make fair use of these tracks.


* There is No Middle Ground on Encryption
Government officials are once again insisting that they still need to
compromise our security via a backdoor for law enforcement. Opponents of
encryption imagine that there is a “middle ground” approach that allows
for strong encryption but with “exceptional access” for law enforcement.
Government officials claim that technology companies are creating a world
where people can commit crimes without fear of detection.

Despite this renewed rhetoric, most experts continue to agree that
exceptional access, no matter how you implement it, weakens security. The
terminology might have changed, but the essential question has not: should
technology companies be forced to develop a system that inherently harms
their users? The answer hasn’t changed either: no.


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* Certbot Hackathon in Cleveland, OH
Are you coming to PyCon? Join our development sprint to help improve Certbot,
the easy-to-use client that fetches and deploys SSL/TLS certificates from
Let's Encrypt.


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Job Openings

* Member Outreach Assistant
We're looking for an energetic Member Outreach Assistant to support EFF's
fundraising operations and help build relationships with our growing


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- License Plate Surveillance Prompts New Concerns About Your Privacy
Unrestrained, unmonitored sharing of data collected by automated license
plate readers is a threat to privacy and public safety. (NBC San Diego)


- Technology turns our cities into spies for ICE, whether we like it or not
Local law enforcement and other city agencies have been deploying spy
technology that's "hurtling toward us so fast that privacy laws can't keep
up." We need to fight back. (LA Times)


- Once Again, Activists Must Beg the Government to Preserve the Right to Repair
This year's "excruciating DMCA section 1201 exemption process" threatens the
right to repair tractors, cars, and electronics is at stake. (Motherboard)


- ISPs should charge for fast lanes—just like TSA Precheck, GOP lawmaker says
In a way, Representative Marsha Blackburn is right that paid prioritization
is like TSA Precheck. In that everyone else is stuck in a slow lane while
those with money get to breeze past them. (Ars Technica)


- As the Number of Driverless Cars Increase, So Does the Need for Car Maker Transparency
Self-driving car companies may not want to share accident data out of fear it
will help competitors to progress faster. But the trade-off is a higher level
of safety—and its a trade-off we should demand they make. (Los Angeles)


- Halifax police won't charge teen arrested in Nova Scotia privacy breach
Excellent news: Canadian police have dropped computer hacking charges against
a 19-year-old who downloaded openly available information from a public
records website. (CBC)


- Oakland to require public approval of surveillance tech
We must assure that there is transparency when cities allow police to acquire
or use surveillance technology. On May 1, Oakland City Council voted in
support of an important proposed Surveillance and Community Safety Ordinance
to do just that. (East Bay Times)


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