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CRYPTO 2018: “Middle Ground” Proposals for a Going-Dark Fix

On August 19, the CRYPTO 2018 conference on cryptographic research hosted a one-day workshop in Santa Barbara called “Encryption and Surveillance.” The goal of the workshop was to “examine how encryption and related technologies pose both challenges and opportunities for surveillance and reform of surveillance.” I was fortunate to be able to attend this workshop, listen to the panelists’ presentations, and observe the intelligent discussion between speakers and attendees about the topics at hand. Read more about CRYPTO 2018: “Middle Ground” Proposals for a Going-Dark Fix

Comments on DOJ's "Cyber-Digital Task Force" Report

Earlier this month, the Department of Justice’s “Cyber-Digital Task Force” released a report “assess[ing] the Department’s work in the cyber area.” The report, which runs over 150 pages, covers a broad range of topics. Among these, in the “Looking Ahead” chapter, is “Going Dark”: DOJ’s name for a constellation of issues that render the government “unable to obtain critical information in an intelligible and usable form (or at all),” primarily encryption (and default encryption in particular). Read more about Comments on DOJ's "Cyber-Digital Task Force" Report

Failing the Real Test: SB 822 No Longer Restores All the Lost Net Neutrality Protections

On June 20, SB 822 had its first committee hearing in the California Assembly. The bill, authored by Senator Scott Wiener, sought to bring back net neutrality to California and restore all of the important protections that the FCC voted to eliminate in December. It was widely viewed as a net neutrality model bill that would set the standard for other states. But instead of passing the bill, the committee adopted amendments that effectively gutted it, removing critical protections at a time when they are more important than ever. 
 

Internet Platforms: Observations on Speech, Danger, and Money

Public demands for internet platforms to intervene more aggressively in online content are steadily mounting. Calls for companies like YouTube and Facebook to fight problems ranging from “fake news” to virulent misogyny to online radicalization seem to make daily headlines. British prime minister Theresa May echoed the politically prevailing sentiment in Europe when she urged platforms to “go further and faster” in removing prohibited content, including through use of automated filters. Read more about Internet Platforms: Observations on Speech, Danger, and Money

Un-Sexy Headline: USB Restricted Mode Will Improve iPhone User Security

In the upcoming version of the Apple iPhone iOS operating system, iOS 12, the phone’s Lightning cable port (used for charging and data transmission) will be disabled an hour after the phone is locked. The device will still charge, but transferring data to or from the device via the Lightning cable will require entering the device’s password first. Read more about Un-Sexy Headline: USB Restricted Mode Will Improve iPhone User Security

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