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At a time of great need, has the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board neutered itself?

The Supreme Court just ruled that police can collect the DNA of people who are never charged with a crime.

The actions of your government in seizing the phone records of all Americans have just been exposed.

The same government has been sweeping up wide swaths of data on the activities of innocent people from [...]

Edward Snowden Is A Hero

“I don’t see myself as a hero,” says Edward Snowden, the man who leaked the secret of the U.S. military’s massive spying against the American people.

I disagree. Snowden was an insider, and he was comfortably rewarded for going with the flow. He had a home in Hawaii. He earned about $200,000 per year. All [...]

While U.S. Government Secretly Tapped Phones and Internet, Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board was Stymied

This morning, you may feel like wearing a tin-foil hat to protect yourself, and such an act wouldn’t be entirely kooky. Yesterday, leaks to newspapers revealed that the United States government has not only been seizing the records of billions of phone calls taking place inside and outside the United States, but also has been [...]

This Liberal Says Obama Must Resign Over Telephone Spying Abuses

Barack Obama must resign, and Congress must repeal the FISA Amendments Act. Then, a special independent commission must be given the power to investigate and reveal the full extent of abusive government search and seizure under the FISA Amendments Act and Patriot Act, under both Barack Obama and George W. Bush. [...]

Except for Ed Markey, Congressional Privacy Caucus Utterly Silent on Drones

A month ago, I noted the apparently ironic declaration of the “Bipartisan Congressional Privacy Caucus”:

The Bipartisan Congressional Privacy Caucus was designed to educate Members of Congress and their staff on matter of individual privacy, to provide a forum for the discussion of these issues, and to serve as a legislative advocate for personal privacy [...]

Bipartisan Coalition Emerges to Support Geolocation Privacy Bill in Congress

As time passes, the usefulness of the party labels “Democrat” and “Republican” as a reliable shorthand for policy preference seems to be falling away. Bipartisan coalitions for bills are there in the 113th Congress, if you look beyond the headlines for them.

Consider the Geolocation Privacy and Surveillance Act (also known as the “GPS Act”), [...]

So Far, Privacy Caucus and Progressive Caucus Neglect Protection from Drones

Two congressional caucuses declare their interest in protecting Americans’ freedom from privacy invasions and liberty violations.

Bipartisan Privacy Caucus:

“The Bipartisan Congressional Privacy Caucus was designed to educate Members of Congress and their staff on matter of indiviual privacy, to provide a forum for the discussion of these issues, and to serve as a legislative [...]

Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board Meets March 5. Can You Find Your Invitation?

Because President Barack Obama has not bothered to open a web page for the underfunded, unstaffed and unchaired Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, the only way for members of the public to know about its activities is to pay close attention to this website maintained by the Federal Registry. Despite federal law, the Board [...]

Senator Chuck Grassley Blocks Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight

On February 14 2013, the Senate Judiciary Committee was poised to consider the confirmation of David Medine as Chair of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB). For people who care about the U.S. Constitution and the preservation of constitutional liberty in America, this confirmation is a pretty big deal. It’s sad to say, [...]

Without Chair, Privacy & Civil Liberties Board goes 114 Days Without Action

Because the White House does not post any public information about the activities of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, the only record of its activities are held in the Federal Register. According to the Federal Register, the board has gone 114 days since its last public meeting. This inactivity reflects the lack of [...]

Mostly Consistent Support for Al Franken's Location Privacy Bill

Last year, Senator Al Franken of Minnesota introduced a location privacy bill to the U.S. Senate that cleared the Senate Judiciary committee but didn’t make it onto the floor. The bill (read the text here) would have stopped the pernicious practice by corporate America of selling information about your location that you generate when you [...]