Articles about eff

DRM now a formal Web recommendation after protest vote fails

Anti-piracy and anti-copying protections are now formally part of the World Wide Web after an effort to vote down content controls at the WWW's standards body failed. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has been embroiled in controversy for five years over the introduction of the Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) specification …
Kieren McCarthy, 18 Sep 2017

US government sued by 11 pissed-off travellers over computer searches

The US Department of Homeland Security is being sued by 11 travellers who had their smartphones and laptops seized and searched at the US border. The lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) claims that the searches were unconstitutional. Ten of the 11 …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 Sep 2017
License plates

US cops can't keep license plate data scans secret without reason

Police departments cannot categorically deny access to data collected through automated license plate readers, California's Supreme Court said on Thursday – a ruling that may help privacy advocates monitor government data practices. The ACLU Foundation of Southern California and the Electronic Frontier Foundation sought to …

US border cops must get warrants to search phones, devices – EFF

The controversial topic of electronic device searches at the US border, and whether customs agents should be required to get warrants before sucking data off them, is heading to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. For several years the legal issues surrounding what border agents are entitled to do with your electronic devices …
gag

It's A-OK for FBI agents to silence web giants, says appeals court

Gagging orders in the FBI's National Security Letters are all above board and constitutional, a California court has ruled. These security letters are typically sent to internet giants demanding information on whoever is behind a username or email address. Crucially, these requests include clauses that prevent the …
Iain Thomson, 18 Jul 2017
Keeping a secret photo via Shutterstock

FOIA documents show the Kafkaesque state of US mass surveillance

A mystery technology biz tried to fight off demands from the US government that it hand over people's communications flowing through its systems. The unnamed company refused to obey the surveillance order, and was also denied the ability to even review the outcomes of any previous challenges to help form its case. That's …
Iain Thomson, 16 Jun 2017

NSA takes one-two punch to the face

The US National Security Agency has been hit by two legal losses that may put the last part of its controversial spying program on US citizens under threat. In one case, brought by customers of AT&T and run by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the NSA was ordered [PDF] to provide relevant evidence that would prove or …
Kieren McCarthy, 23 May 2017

'Tech troll' sues EFF to silence 'Stupid Patent of the Month' blog. Now the EFF sues back

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is countersuing a patent troll that wants its name removed from a "stupid patent of the month" blog post. Global Equity Management (SA) Pty Ltd (GEMSA) is incorporated in Australia and exists only to bring patent litigation, making it "a classic patent troll," the EFF claims. GEMSA appeared …
Kieren McCarthy, 14 Apr 2017
email

Congratulations IBM for 'inventing' out-of-office email. You win Stupid Patent of the Month

Updated You know the out-of-office automatic emails that we've been using for the past 20 years? Well, IBM has just been awarded a patent that states it practically invented the system. IBM applied for the patent seven years ago and has amended its filing since then. As a result, the US Patent Office issued Patent No 9,547,842 on …
Iain Thomson, 1 Mar 2017
The FBI seal on a building

FBI takes gag out of Cloudflare's mouth after three-year legal battle

Cloudflare successfully fended off an FBI demand for people's private information, we can report this week now that a gagging order has been ripped away. In February 2013, the Feds slapped a National Security Letter (NSL) on the San Francisco-based web delivery biz, requiring it to hand over some customer account records and …

The encryption conundrum: Should tech compromise or double down?

Versus16 Silicon Valley should work with the US government in Washington to arrive at a solution that gives law enforcement access to encrypted comms, but that respects individual privacy. That's according to former White House counterterrorism and cybersecurity official Daniel Rosenthal, who was debating where the issue of encryption …
Kieren McCarthy, 18 Nov 2016
WTF road sign

Ludicrous Patent of the Week: Rectangles on a computer screen

Pic Chinese internet giant Tencent is the newly minted holder of a US design patent on the concept of placing rectangles on a display screen. US Patent D767,583 describes a "design concept" that, in the words of the applicant, consists of "the ornamental design for a display screen portion with graphical user interface." What …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Sep 2016
DMCA

Crypto guru Matt Green asks courts for DMCA force field so he can safely write a textbook

Assistant Professor Matthew Green has asked US courts for protection so that he can write a textbook explaining cryptography without getting sued under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Green, who teaches at Johns Hopkins University in Maryland, is penning a tome called Practical Cryptographic Engineering that examines the …
Iain Thomson, 30 Sep 2016

Cops blasted for relying on IP addresses to hunt down suspects

A new white paper from the Electronic Frontier Foundation argues that police rely too heavily on IP addresses when conducting criminal investigations. The paper [PDF], written by EFF executive director Cindy Cohn along with legal fellow Aaron Mackey and senior staff technologist Seth Schoen, argues that the numerical addresses …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Sep 2016
A fiber optic cable

EFF vows to take up muni broadband cause after FCC denied

With a US court having recently overturned the FCC's attempts to push for municipal broadband networks, online activists are readying their own campaign. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is putting its weight behind efforts to overturn or amend state laws that restrict cities from building their own broadband networks …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Aug 2016

Kazakhstan accused of hacking journos, activists by EFF

Black Hat The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has accused the Kazakhstan Government of sending malware-laced phishing emails to two investigative journalists in the country, along with activists, and family members to help spy, locate and extradite targets. The group revealed their detailed technical findings at the Black Hat …
Darren Pauli, 5 Aug 2016

EFF declares anti-piracy DMCA unconstitutional in new legal showdown

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has launched a lawsuit claiming that a controversial anti-digital-piracy law in the US is unconstitutional. Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) – which became law 18 years ago – has long been controversial due to its heavy restrictions on what people are allowed …
Kieren McCarthy, 21 Jul 2016
troll

Supreme Court okays troll toll increase

The US Supreme Court has struck down rules limiting patent infringement damages in a decision opponents fear will embolden trolls. In a unanimous opinion [PDF], the court overturned a lower court's ruling in the Halo Electronics v Pulse Electronics case and, in the process, shot down a review standard that has been used to …
Shaun Nichols, 13 Jun 2016

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