EFF Sends Letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee to Oppose EARN IT
February 10, 2022, 4:27 AM
On Wednesday, February 9, EFF sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee to strongly oppose S. 3538, the Eliminating Abusive and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies Act of 2022 (EARN IT Act). EFF opposed the original and amended versions of this bill in the previous Congress, and our letter outlines our concerns with the reintroduced version of the bill that the sponsors have not addressed.
Given its significant problems and potential vast impact on internet users, we urged the Com...
Robots Have No Place Filtering Creative Content, EFF Tells U.S. Copyright Office
February 9, 2022, 11:28 PM
Software robots should not be deciding whether your creative content, whether written words, videos, photos, or music, ought to be pulled off the internet.That’s what we told the U.S. Copyright office in comments we filed February 8 arguing against requiring service providers to embrace “standard technical measures” to address copyright infringement. While some technologies can be useful to flag potential infringement, technical measures such as automated filters are dangerous because they...
Activists, Writers, and Security Experts All Oppose the EARN IT Act
February 9, 2022, 7:26 PM
Along with 60 other human rights, civil rights and open Internet organizations, EFF sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, February 9 outlining our concerns with the Eliminating Abusive and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies Act of 2022 (EARN IT, S.3538).
As we wrote when the bill was introduced, this bill threatens encryption and free speech, while making it harder to protect children from online abuse. That’s why such a broad coalition of civil society groups...
Victory! ID.me to Drop Facial Recognition Requirement for Government Services
February 9, 2022, 6:02 PM
First, the Internal Revenue Service reversed course from its recent announcement that it was partnering with ID.me, a third-party identity verification service, to use facial recognition for verification of users managing many aspects of their taxes online. Now, ID.me—which provides identity verification services for dozens of government agencies—says it will drop its facial recognition requirement entirely for these agencies, in a victory for privacy and security.
This is an important win...
What the Duck? Why an EU Proposal to Require "QWACs" Will Hurt Internet Security
February 9, 2022, 12:00 PM
It's become easier over the years for websites to improve their security, thanks to tools that allow more people to automate and easily set-up secure measures for web applications and the services they provide. A proposed amendment to Article 45 in the EU’s Digital Identity Framework (eIDAS) would roll back these gains by requiring outdated ideas for security and authentication of websites. The amendment states that “web-browsers shall ensure that the identity data provided using any of the ...
EFF Joins Activists And Human Rights Groups To Reject Attacks on Encryption
February 9, 2022, 5:17 AM
Encryption is under attack. In liberal democracies, elected leaders are giving lip service to our right to privacy—while seeking to create a system where they can scan any data we send over the internet.
Earlier this month, the U.K. Home Office spent public money on a high-priced ad campaign that bad-mouthed encryption, portraying it as a tool used by criminals. In the U.S., a Senate committee is about to vote on the dangerous “EARN IT” Act, which could lead to widespread scanning of pri...
Send Surveillance Robot Dogs to the Pound, Not the Border
February 8, 2022, 9:34 PM
On February 1, 2022, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate, the official research and development arm of the agency, released a cutesy press release about how robotic dogs made in collaboration with Ghost Robotics are “one step closer” to deployment on the U.S.-Mexico border. Covered with sensors and cameras that can relay information and footage in real time to Customs and Border Protection (CBP), these machines are less cute-video or selfie fodder ...
If EARN IT Passes, What Happens On Your iPhone Won't Stay On Your iPhone
February 8, 2022, 8:21 PM
Last year, Apple announced a controversial plan to install photo scanning software in every device. Apple has long been seen as a pro-privacy company—billboards emblazoned with the slogan “What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone” were common sights in 2019. A global coalition pushed back, and the company paused the plan.
Now, Congress wants to force Apple’s hand—along with essentially every company that allows users to store or share messages or content—and essentially ma...
Ohio: Don’t Give Big Tech a Pass On Privacy
February 8, 2022, 7:44 PM
Ohio lawmakers are giving big tech companies a gift in the form of the Ohio Personal Privacy Act. This law purports to strike a balance between consumer protection and company demands. Instead, it stacks the deck even further against individuals who want to protect their privacy.
The OPPA would enshrine privacy violating practices from Big Tech and other companies, and place the responsibility for managing privacy entirely on individuals—without actually improving protections for the people of...
EFF to Appeals: Apple’s Monopoly Doesn’t Make Users Safer
February 4, 2022, 11:19 PM
When users fork over money for an iPhone (average price: over $800), many expect to be able to play their favorite mobile game on it. They expect the apps they buy to work. Many users also expect to install apps that enhance their security and privacy beyond what Apple provides.
Users may not know or understand that Apple’s rules for the App Store can get in the way, by driving up app costs and limiting availability. Apple uses layers of digital locks to channel all app purchases and downloads...
Senate Commerce Committee is Letting Big Telecom Hamstring the FCC
February 4, 2022, 9:37 PM
Six months have passed since the Biden Administration signed an Executive Order to restore Net Neutrality at the FCC. And three months have passed since the President nominated net neutrality champion Gigi Sohn, a member of the EFF board, to the FCC. (Sohn will leave the EFF board if she is confirmed.) Yet Sohn’s nomination is still stuck at the Senate Commerce Committee over apparent reluctance from the committee leadership, including its chair Senator Maria Cantwell (D-Washington) and ranki...
SHOP SAFE Will Stomp Out Online Sales of Used and Homemade Goods https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2022/02/shop-safe-will-stomp-out-online-sales-used-and-homemade-goods
February 3, 2022, 9:21 PM
The House of Representatives has inserted SHOP SAFE—a piece of legislation that would make it extremely difficult for any individual to sell things online and equally difficult for any online platform to compete with Amazon—into a 3,000-page trade bill. It cannot remain there.
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