Cyber-Espionage and Trade Agreements: An Ill-Fitting and Dangerous Combination | EFF

Yesterday’s leak of a May 2014 draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement revealed the addition of new text criminalizing the misuse of trade secrets through “computer systems”, as mentioned in our previous post about the leak. This is a significant revelation, because we also know that trade secrets are planned for inclusion in the EU-US free trade agreement, TTIP (the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership). The revelation of the proposed text in the TPP provides a good indication that the same kind of language will likely also appear in TTIP. Frighteningly, this text contains no protections to safeguard the public interest.

Today we delve into this provision and its background in more depth. [Read more]

The FBI Director’s Evidence Against Encryption Is Pathetic | The Intercept

FBI Director James Comey gave a speech Thursday about how cell-phone encryption could lead law enforcement to a “very dark place” where it “misses out” on crucial evidence to nail criminals. To make his case, he cited four real-life examples — examples that would be laughable if they weren’t so tragic.

In the three cases The Intercept was able to examine, cell-phone evidence had nothing to do with the identification or capture of the culprits, and encryption would not remotely have been a factor. [Read more]

Int’l Community Promises to Rebuild Gaza … with Sweat Shops to Exploit Palestinian Workers | OpEdNews

The Israeli siege of the Gaza Strip has brought with it a depressingly familiar ritual: The Israeli military destroys large swaths of the ghettoized coastal enclave, leaving tens of thousands homeless, a trail of carnage and piles of rubble. Then, Western and Arab diplomats rush to some Middle Eastern capitol to play janitor to the Jewish state, pledging billions in aid to clean up Israel’s mess. And like clockwork, Israel destroys everything all over again just a year or two later, bombarding Gaza with unprecedented ferocity.

When Israel’s international janitorial crew gathered this week in Cairo with a pledge to raise $5 billion to help rebuild the $8 billion in damage Israel caused to Gaza’s civilian population, it was assured by Israeli Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz that its efforts were utterly futile. “The Gazans must decide what they want to be Singapore or Darfur,” Katz remarked, leveling the threat of genocide against the fantasy of economic prosperity. “They can pick between economic recovery and war and destruction. If they choose terror, the world should not waste its money. If one missile will be fired, everything will go down the drain.” [Read more]

Ello founder Paul Budnitz: America is a ‘car crash’ on privacy | The Telegraph

Paul Budnitz is perched on a stool in a store cupboard, his wiry body a little too tall for the space. Boxes are piled up on the floor next to him and stacks of bicycle parts sit on the shelves.

It is an odd setting in which to discuss Ello, the new social network that has taken the technology world by storm, but it is the only quiet spot he can find. The company is currently squatting in the open-plan office of one of Budnitz’s other business ventures, in sleepy Burlington, Vermont. [Read more]

Has our right to privacy been forgotten? | TechRadar

Has our right to privacy been forgotten? It sometimes seems so. Theresa May and other authoritarians seem to want to ensure that everything is remembered, whilst Google often seem aggrieved that it should be possible for anything to be forgotten. Our privacy – our privacy rights – seem to be the only thing that is forgotten.

And yet, right now, both Google and what might loosely be called the intelligence community are (at least at the surface level) consulting over how best to take privacy into account. Both, however, are doing so very much on their own terms, and the level to which they are really “consulting” with the people needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. [Read more]

The law is full of ironies – the more privacy we seek the more that is seen – take Barbara Streisand | Sydney Morning Herald

The law is full of ironies. In recent years, civil libertarians have been lobbying for the right to be forgotten. It is an outgrowth of the right to privacy. To a writer like me, it is the very antithesis of what we do. However, lawyers acting on behalf of Mario Costeja Gonzalez went to the European Court of Justice to demand that Google remove the link to a digitised 1998 article in La Vanguardia newspaper about an auction for his foreclosed home, for a debt that he had subsequently paid. Mario Costeja Gonzalez wanted to assert his right to be forgotten and for Google to delete any reference to him through the article. He won the case but lost the war.

The case of Google Spain v AEPD and Mario Costeja Gonzalez is now the leading case on the right to be forgotten; his name now will forever be in every legal text, case opinion and student assignment. Already his surname is shorthand for the case reference and the line authority that preceded and asserted this never before acknowledged aspect of the right to privacy, that is, the right to be forgotten. In searching for anonymity, he is now always in plain sight. This is known as the law of unintended consequences. [Read more]


Related Articles – Michael’s Blog