PRIVACY + SECURITY BLOG

News, Developments, and Insights

high-tech technology background with eyes on computer display

NSA Surveillance and the First Amendment

First Amendment

Earlier today, a federal district judge struck down the Bush Administration’s NSA surveillance program which involved intercepting international electronic communications without a warrant. The opinion is available here. I have not had time to read the opinion carefully yet, but I am especially intrigued by the court’s use of the First Amendment as one of the […]

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Is There a Good Response to the “Nothing to Hide” Argument?

Nothing to Hide Argument

One of the most common attitudes of those unconcerned about government surveillance or privacy invasions is “I’ve got nothing to hide.” I was talking the issue over one day with a few colleagues in my field, and we all agreed that thus far, those emphasizing the value of privacy had not been able to articulate […]

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Electronic Surveillance Statistics for 2005

Surveillance Audio

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has released its annual report on the number of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) orders, Wiretap Act orders, and National Security Letters issued in 2005. For FISA surveillance orders, 2072 applications were made to the FISA court; none were denied. Over the past few years, the number of orders has been steadily increasing: […]

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A Translation of Gonzales’s Answers at the NSA Surveillance Hearings

NSA Surveillance

The NSA surveillance hearings began today with the testimony of Attorney General Gonzales. To save you the time to read through the extensive transcript (here and here), I thought I’d translate some of Gonzales’s remarks for you: […]

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Making Sense of Public Attitudes Toward NSA Surveillance

NSA Surveillance

MSNBC journalist Bob Sullivan, in his blog Red Tape Chronicles, writes: Ask Americans something like, “Should the government be allowed to read e-mails and listen to phone calls to fight terrorism?” and you’ll get a much different result than if you ask, “Should the government be allowed to read your e-mails and listen to your phone […]

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Whistleblowing, Journalist Privilege, and NSA Surveillance

Whistleblowing NSA

The DOJ has launched a probe into the leaking of the NSA surveillance program to the New York Times: “The leaking of classified information is a serious issue. The fact is that al-Qaida’s playbook is not printed on Page One and when America’s is, it has serious ramifications,” Duffy told reporters in Crawford, Texas, where Bush was […]

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