Australia Moves To Massively Expand Internet Surveillance

The Australian government has proposed sweeping changes to its surveillance and national security laws. The government’s wish list includes mandatory data retention, surveillance of social networks, criminalization of encryption, and lower thresholds for warrants. As it seeks to expand its surveillance powers, the government also wants to dilute oversight by jettisoning record-keeping requirements. This week I submitted detailed comments opposing the changes to the Joint Parliamentary Committee on Intelligence and Security.

Help Drones Invade SXSW

If you read this blog, chances are you're aware of SXSW, a unique festival exploring music, film, and emerging technology.  Recent years have seen one or two robotics panels at SXSW Interactive; I would be surprised if robotics did not feature prominently this March.  You can help ensure an appearance by one robot in particular: the drone.  There are at least three, drone-related panels currrently submitted for SXSW.  Please vote for one or more if inclined.  Thanks, and I hope to see you there.

UPDATED: Sixth Circuit Cell Tracking Case Travels Down the Wrong Road

Today the Sixth Circuit ruled in United States v. Skinner that police do not need a warrant to obtain GPS location data for mobile phones. Investigators obtained an unspecified court order, but not a warrant, to obtain subscriber information, cell site information, GPS real-time location, and “ping” data regarding two different prepaid cell phone numbers.

The Court does not explain the technology used for tracking the defendant.


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