House leadership is trying to ram through a reauthorization of FISA and PATRIOT Act surveillance authorities using an obscure Congressional mechanism

House leadership is trying to ram through a reauthorization of FISA and PATRIOT Act surveillance authorities using an obscure Congressional mechanism

Not only would this prevent the House of Representatives from voting on the popular Wyden-Daines amendment which would force the government to obtain a warrant before spying on people’s Internet activity, but it would also prevent the House from ratifying the Lee-Leahy amendment which has been passed by the Senate to protect journalists, political candidates, and religious groups from government surveillance.

Sen. Ron Wyden Wants to Stop the Government From Spying on Your Internet Searches

Sen. Ron Wyden Wants to Stop the Government From Spying on Your Internet Searches

Greer says Wyden's introduction of the amendment could be a way of alerting the public that intelligence agencies have already been collecting U.S. citizens' web search data.

House leaders agree to vote on amendment restricting surveillance of internet browsing

House leaders agree to vote on amendment restricting surveillance of internet browsing

Lofgren and Davidson advocated for their amendment in a letter Wednesday to the House Rules Committee, noting that the Wyden-Daines proposal had a bipartisan majority of the Senate and that at least two senators indicated they would have voted for it had they been present.The House is expected to pass the surveillance measure next week.

Wyden, Rounds and Eshoo Lead Bipartisan Call to Secure U.S. Capitol Phone Networks

Wyden, Rounds and Eshoo Lead Bipartisan Call to Secure U.S. Capitol Phone Networks

– U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Mike Rounds, R-S.D., with Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Calif., led 20 members of the House and Senate in a request to encrypt phone calls between the chambers to protect communications against foreign surveillance.

Access your browsing history w/o a warrant? Senate votes yes.

Access your browsing history w/o a warrant? Senate votes yes.

There was some good news: a second amendment did pass, which allows judges ruling on Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) requests to seek input from independent experts.

Mastriano: Federal HIPAA Regs Should be Suspended During Coronavirus Pandemic

Mastriano: Federal HIPAA Regs Should be Suspended During Coronavirus Pandemic

HARRISBURG – As a result of the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, State Senator Doug Mastriano (R-33) is introducing a measure calling upon the federal government to temporarily suspend the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Republicans propose mass student surveillance plan to prevent shootings

Republicans propose mass student surveillance plan to prevent shootings

Senate Republicans have a new plan for preventing mass shootings: require public schools to use surveillance technology to monitor students’ online behavior for signs of violence or self-harm.

Senator proposes mandatory labeling for products with mics, cameras

Senator proposes mandatory labeling for products with mics, cameras

A rule such as the regulation Gardner proposes would close the gap that, for example, led owners of Nest Secure devices to the unpleasant discovery earlier this year that the products had shipped with undisclosed microphones.

California’s Senate Judiciary Committee Blocks Efforts to Weaken California’s Privacy Law

California’s Senate Judiciary Committee Blocks Efforts to Weaken California’s Privacy Law

Thankfully, Senate Judiciary Committee members voted down A.B. 873, which privacy advocates opposed because it would have weakened the definition of “personal information” and undermined critical privacy protections in the CCPA.

Media Briefing Monday: EFF and Partners Will Discuss California Bills Aimed at Weakening State’s Consumer Privacy Law

Media Briefing Monday: EFF and Partners Will Discuss California Bills Aimed at Weakening State’s Consumer Privacy Law

San Francisco—On Monday, June 8, at 11 am, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the ACLU, Common Sense Media, Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, and Consumer Reports will hold a conference call to brief reporters about five bills designed to weaken consumer privacy protections that are set for hearing in the California Senate.

This Is How You're Being Manipulated

This Is How You're Being Manipulated

At a preliminary U.S. Senate hearing today on the subject of potentially putting legislative limits on the persuasiveness of technology - a diplomatic way of saying the addiction model the internet uses to keep people engaged and clicking - Tristan Harris, the executive director of the Center for Humane Technology, told lawmakers that while rules are important, what needs to come first is public awareness.

The NSA says it's time to drop its massive phone-surveillance program

The NSA says it's time to drop its massive phone-surveillance program

But earlier this year, Republican congressional national security adviser Luke Murry revealed that due to compliance and technical issues, the NSA hadn't even been using the system for the previous six months, calling into question the NSA's previous insistence that such data collection is vital to national security.

Washington state’s data privacy bill, supported by Microsoft, dies as key players fail to reach compromise

Washington state’s data privacy bill, supported by Microsoft, dies as key players fail to reach compromise

Efforts to enact new data privacy regulations in Washington state failed this week as legislators and tech titans Amazon and Microsoft failed to reach a compromise before the deadline. State Sen. Reuven Carlyle sponsored the bill and vowed to revive the effort to enact new privacy regulations in 2020.

'A More Just and Equitable Future': Advocates Welcome Markey's Privacy Bill of Rights

'A More Just and Equitable Future': Advocates Welcome Markey's Privacy Bill of Rights

Dylan Gilbert, a policy fellow at the nonprofit Public Knowledge, said that "Senator Markey's Privacy Bill of Rights Act sets a strong, rights-based standard for consumer privacy protection under federal law that goes beyond mere notice and choice.".

Google's work in China benefiting China's military: U.S. general

Google's work in China benefiting China's military: U.S. general

REUTERS/Aly Song “The work that Google is doing in China is indirectly benefiting the Chinese military,” Marine General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.

Senators want to know when they've been hacked

Senators want to know when they've been hacked

In a letter signed by Sen. Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon, and Sen. Tom Cotton, a Republican from Arkansas, the senators ask Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger to provide an annual report on the number of times Senate computers have been hacked, and incidents where hackers were able to access sensitive Senate data.

'Save the Internet Act of 2019' Aims to Restore Net Neutrality

'Save the Internet Act of 2019' Aims to Restore Net Neutrality

Democrats in the House and Senate introduced companions bills aimed at reinstating the Obama-era net neutrality rules that prohibited broadband providers from blocking or throttling websites or offering preferred businesses higher-quality service for additional fees.

U.S. Democrats unveil legislation to reinstate net neutrality rules

U.S. Democrats unveil legislation to reinstate net neutrality rules

REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo The bill mirrors an effort last year to reverse the FCC’s December 2017 order repealing landmark rules approved in 2015 that barred internet providers from blocking or slowing content or offering paid “fast lanes.” “It is a fight that we can win,” said Senator Ed Markey, a bill sponsor, at a Capitol Hill news conference.

AT&T Throwing FundRaiser For Senate Chair Ahead Of Privacy Hearings

AT&T Throwing FundRaiser For Senate Chair Ahead Of Privacy Hearings

The next day Wicker’s committee will hold its first hearing of the new Congress on crafting comprehensive data privacy legislation — a key issue for the telecom industry." The fact that a huge swath of folks don't see a problem here speaks to how Sisyphean the effort for meaningful privacy rules is going to be.

U.S. lawmakers in battle to regulate social media firms on data-privacy

U.S. lawmakers in battle to regulate social media firms on data-privacy

Most significantly, tech companies themselves have been lobbying Congress to pass national legislation that would override an emerging patchwork of state privacy laws – particularly new rules set to take effect in California next year that would give the state’s attorney-general broad powers to police Silicon Valley.

Sen. Warner blasts Google for hidden Nest microphone: Federal agencies and Congress 'must have hearings to shine a light on the dark underbelly of the digital economy'

Sen. Warner blasts Google for hidden Nest microphone: Federal agencies and Congress 'must have hearings to shine a light on the dark underbelly of the digital economy'

"That was an error on our part." Read more: Google says the built-in microphone it never told Nest users about was 'never supposed to be a secret' Warner said that federal hearings may need to take place to bring more answers to consumer questions about their smart home devices.

Senate inquiry to probe Russian agent's meetings with Treasury, Fed

Senate inquiry to probe Russian agent's meetings with Treasury, Fed

That report revealed details about previously unreported meetings in 2015 set up by the Center for the National Interest, a Washington foreign policy think tank that is supportive of efforts to improve U.S.-Russia relations.

Wyden pitches jail time, billions in fines for online privacy violators with ‘Do Not Track’ bill

Wyden pitches jail time, billions in fines for online privacy violators with ‘Do Not Track’ bill

“Providing more authority and resources to the US Federal Trade Commission is a critical foundation for robust privacy protection.” The bill’s eye-popping penalties are reserved for large companies and wouldn’t apply to privacy violations themselves.

Australia has become the first western country to pass a bill forcing tech companies to hand over your encrypted data

Australia has become the first western country to pass a bill forcing tech companies to hand over your encrypted data

There has been extensive debate about the new law and its reach beyond Australia’s shores in what is seen as the latest salvo between global governments and tech firms over national security and privacy.

Australia gets world-first encryption busting laws

Australia gets world-first encryption busting laws

"To ensure the passage of the bill through the Senate tonight, the government has agreed to consider Labor’s proposed amendments in the new year if any genuinely reflect the recommendations of the parliamentary joint committee on intelligence and security," Porter was quoted by several media outlets as saying.

Senators Call for Jail, Fines After Marriott Data Breach

Senators Call for Jail, Fines After Marriott Data Breach

“Clearly the current status quo isn’t working—the Federal Trade Commission needs real powers with strong teeth in order to punish companies that lose or misuse Americans’ private information,” said Wyden, adding: “Until companies like Marriott feel the threat of multi-billion dollar fines, and jail-time for their senior executives, these companies won’t take privacy seriously.”

Congress May Consider a U.S. Version of GDPR

Congress May Consider a U.S. Version of GDPR

Even after all the committee hearings and the flurry of legislative proposals introduced in the House of Representatives and the Senate, there hasn’t been a lot of movement on security and privacy out of Congress over the past few years.

A Consumer Privacy Hearing With No One Representing Consumers

A Consumer Privacy Hearing With No One Representing Consumers

We look forward to a confirmed hearing date with a diverse panel of witnesses from academia, advocacy, and state consumer protection authorities. Senator Schatz questioned whether companies were coming to Congress simply to block state privacy laws and raised the prospect of creating an actual federal privacy regulator with broad authority.

Privacy groups upset at not being invited to Thune hearing on data privacy

Privacy groups upset at not being invited to Thune hearing on data privacy

Faced with tougher regulations from the European Union and the state of California to protect consumer data, Google, Amazon and other industry groups now want the federal government to pass some regulations, Chester said.

Kavanaugh’s toxic net neutrality record went mostly unnoticed during hearings

Kavanaugh’s toxic net neutrality record went mostly unnoticed during hearings

Last month several Senate Democrats criticized Kavanaugh’s views on net neutrality, highlighting a dissent he wrote in a case that upheld the 2015 Open Internet Order, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule that enshrined the internet protections and was rescinded last year by the Republican-controlled agency.