Review

Banning Government Use of Face Recognition Technology: 2020 Year in Review

By Nathan Sheard If there was any question about the gravity of problems with police use of face surveillance technology, 2020 wasted no time in proving them dangerously real. Thankfully, from Oregon to Massachusetts, local lawmakers responded by banning their local governments’ use. The Alarm On January 9, after first calling and threatening to arrest…

Litigation Against Mass NSA Surveillance: Year in Review 2020

EFF takes on fights for the long run, and some of our longest running legal fights are focused on bringing the National Security Agency within the rule of law, and batting back the arguments that the state secrets privilege should insulate the government from accountability for spying. EFF started these cases in 2006 with Hepting…

The Year In Review: 2020 In 20 Visualizations

Authored by Nick Routley via VisualCapitalist.com, Can you remember a year more life-changing than 2020? Over a million lives were lost in the pandemic, oil prices turned negative, and protests swept the streets. At the same time, 10 years of technology advancements seemed to happen in mere months—and now vaccinations are rolling out at a…

Student Privacy and the Fight to Keep Spying Out of Schools: Year in Review 2020

By Lindsay Oliver and Jacob Hoffman-Andrews As students were sent home from school in the spring due to the coronavirus pandemic, schools followed them home with invasive surveillance technology. This trend, spurred by the surge in remote learning, was an opportunistic move by tech companies and schools already in a race to control students through…

Law Professor Opposes FCC Broadband Satellite Program Due to Lack of Environmental Review

By B.N. Frank High speed internet is achievable, safer and more secure with a wired internet connection (see 1, 2) – not 5G or WiFi.  Americans have paid to have this already (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is still providing hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars for satellites to…

Surveillance Self-Defense and Security Education: Year in Review 2020

By Lindsay Oliver As the world rapidly changed in 2020, new threats arose to our digital security. The shift to online education and the wave of police brutality protests brought new avenues for surveillance, so EFF created new resources to help people protect themselves. EFF maintains a repository of self-help resources for fighting back against…

High Tech Police Surveillance of Protests and Activism: Year in Review 2020

By Matthew Guariglia This summer’s Black-led protest movement against police violence was one of the largest political movements in the history of the United States–and with it, came a massive proliferation of government surveillance technology aimed at activists and demonstrators. EFF has been standing up for the right to protest without being surveilled for 30…

COVID-19 and Surveillance Tech: Year in Review 2020

By Adam Schwartz Location tracking apps. Spyware to enforce quarantine. Immunity passports. Throughout 2020, governments around the world deployed invasive surveillance technologies to contain the COVID-19 outbreak. But heavy-handed tactics like these undercut public trust in government, precisely when trust is needed most. They also invade our privacy and chill our free speech. And all…

Dave Collum's 2020 Year In Review, Part 1: "Willfully Ignorant"

Authored by David B. Collum, Betty R. Miller Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology – Cornell University (Email: dbc6@cornell.edu, Twitter: @DavidBCollum), “David Collum is willfully ignorant.” ~ Mountain Man (@Pjas77) Every year, David Collum writes a detailed “Year in Review” synopsis full of keen perspective and plenty of wit. This year’s is no exception. Introduction Imagine, if you will,…

Law Review Addresses Legal and Social Challenges of “Internet of Bodies” and “Internet of Things”

By B.N. Frank Experts have warned for years about serious privacy and security risks associated with Internet of Things (IoT) technology (see 1, 2). Reports about medical implants and utility “Smart” Meters being extremely vulnerable are beyond scary. Experts have also warned about the serious privacy, security, and social implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications…

#FluorideTrial: Scientist Says He Was Threatened Because of Fluoride Study – Week 1 In Review

The first week of the historic water fluoridation trial wrapped up on Friday afternoon after four days of occasionally tense testimony from expert witnesses with the Fluoride Action Network (FAN) and the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). One expert witness claimed he had been coerced into signing a statement downplaying his study which claimed fluoride…