Oct 302015
 October 30, 2015  Posted by  Breaches, Featured News, Surveillance

Conor Friedersdorf reports:

Edward Snowden is still stuck in Russia more than two years after revealing that the U.S. government engaged in mass surveillance on tens millions of innocent Americans. If he returns to the United States he still faces the prospect of prison, unlike national-security officials who tortured or violated the law by secretly spying on their countrymen, or who have themselves leaked highly classified national-security information. President Obama shows no sign of granting him clemency to acknowledge the public service that he performed and civil-liberties violations he exposed.

Snowden may, however, have a future as a free man in Europe.

On Thursday, the European Parliament voted 285 to 281 to call on EU member states “to drop any criminal charges against Edward Snowden, grant him protection and consequently prevent extradition or rendition by third parties, in recognition of his status as whistle-blower and international human rights defender.”

Read more on The Atlantic.

Oct 302015
 October 30, 2015  Posted by  Non-U.S., Online, Surveillance

Alexander J. Martin reports:

IPB Police have demanded to be given access to the whole of the public’s web-browsing history as part of the forthcoming Investigatory Powers Bill, due to be published in draft form next week.

The government has been lobbied by senior police officers to include in its new surveillance legislation a requirement for service providers to retain a greater range of data, including weblog data, which police would be able to access for investigative purposes.

Read more on The Register.

Oct 302015
 October 30, 2015  Posted by  Online, Surveillance

Vijay Prabhu writes:

The Tor Project has just released the beta version of Tor Messenger, a chat client that allows for anonymous, “off-the-record” chats based on Tor’s secure browsing system.

The Tor instant messaging service is a beta release and took Tor Project developers more than a year to make, promises to create a more private, seamless, accessible way for people to chat securely on the web. The Tor Messenger is built on the instant messaging client Instantbird,  works a lot like Adium, but all chat traffic will be through Tor anonymity network for added privacy.

Read more on TechWorm.

Oct 302015
 October 30, 2015  Posted by  Breaches, Court

Nick Akerman of Dorsey & Whitney LLP

A recent ruling shows that plaintiffs must act fast when using a federal criminal statute for a civil suit.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in August addressed the proper application of the statute of limitations to a civil action—in the context of allegations of malicious statements made on the Internet over a broken romance and sexual  misconduct—brought under the federal computer crime statute,  the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA).   The case was Sewell v. Bernardin.


The Second Circuit acknowledged that the statute of limitations “may have troubling consequences in some situations” because “the investigation necessary to uncover the hacker’s identity may be substantial.”  One option the court recognized was for a  plaintiff to file a John Doe lawsuit to uncover the hacker’s identity.  However,  the court emphasized that the hacker’s identity  still must be discovered within two years because “Rule 15(c) does not allow an amended complaint adding new defendants to relate back if the newly-added defendants were not named originally because the plaintiff did not know their identities.”

Read more on JDSupra.