How the Cops Are Killing the Cloud

What privacy rights do people have for data in the cloud – and more importantly, how can they assert them? A recent case out of New York answers that question as “very little” and “you can’t.” That’s bad for the Cloud, bad for social networking sites, bad for business, and bad for privacy.  In the long…

Details

Court Rules You can be Compelled to Hand Over Decryption Key

Earlier this week, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial waded into the Stygian waters of the interplay between technology and the Fifth Amendment – determining for the first time whether a person could be compelled to provide the government with the decryption key protecting the privacy of documents contained on their computer. Under the specific circumstances of…

Details

Supreme Court Rules that Police Need Warrant to Search Cell Phones Data

In a stunning unanimous decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled against the government finding that police generally need a warrant to search the data contents of a cell phone after they have arrested a suspect. The decision was important because it recognized, in several ways, how technology can impact the rights of privacy, the…

Details

Your Car and the Internet of Things

My 14 year-old-car finally died, so I bit the bullet and bought a new one – with bells and whistles.  The new car has keyless entry, keyless start, integrates with my phone, contacts, traffic., weather, Facebook, etc.  My old one had a rickety old GPS that was OK for getting home. But all the new bells…

Details

Nothing to Hide

When faced with government demands for privacy related information, many citizens exclaim, “If you have nothing to hide you have nothing to worry about.” That’s why people aren’t generally up in arms about things like automated license plate readers, facial recognition, or even surveillance drones for law enforcement. “If you have nothing to hide you…

Details

Paying for Privacy

What would YOU do for a Klondike bar? Would you be willing to tell Unilever (the parent company that makes Klondike) your sexual orientation, political preferences, the fact that you are having an affair with your next door neighbor, and provide your financial records, healthcare records, viewing habits, and other personal information?  I mean, it’s…

Details