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Solutions to Identity Verification Errors Urgently Needed to Help Those Facing Hardship

Lucy* (not her real name), a 29-year-old grocery delivery worker and mother of two in the US city of Houston, Texas, was under enormous financial strain when we interviewed her in May. She said her income had dropped steeply during the pandemic; she…
Workers in Texas may apply for unemployment benefits on the Texas Workforce Commission website.
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Ensure Alternative Registration Methods for Covid-19 Shots

Most US states have prioritized people over 75 in the first wave of Covid-19 vaccinations, but obstacles to securing an appointment can hinder delivery. Most states are using online systems for scheduling. But while technology was once considered the…
Allegheny Health Network employees run a Covid-19 vaccine clinic at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, February 6, 2021.
News

Secure Devices Protect Users from Hacking and Surveillance

The United States Attorney General William Barr announced this week that the government has asked Apple to unlock two encrypted iPhones belonging to the perpetrator of last month’s fatal shooting at a naval base in Pensacola, Florida.…
Attorney General William Barr speaks during a tour of a federal prison in Edgefield, South Carolina
News

Coalition Calls for Stronger Oversight of City’s AI-based Decision-Making

Algorithmic decision-making is becoming the new norm in New York. City agencies use computerized algorithms to make important decisions about New Yorkers’ daily lives, from school assignments to public benefits evaluations and more. But…
A line of police cars are parked along a street in Times Square, in New York, December 29, 2016.
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Resignation of US Rep. Katie Hill Highlights Severe Protection Gaps

  Katie Hill, a US Congress member elected to the House of Representatives less than a year ago, has just resigned, days after nude photos of her – which she says were released without her consent – were posted online by media outlets. Hill…
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States Can Protect Open Internet, but Federal Rollback Upheld

Firefighters struggling against one of the largest blazes to hit California in 2018 had to pause and turn to a much more mundane fight – with their internet service provider. In the midst of the blaze, data speeds slowed to a trickle,…
A router and internet switch are displayed in New Hampshire, United States
News

Courts Should Protect the Public, Not Duck and Cover

Today marks 11 years since the Electronic Frontier Foundation filed a federal lawsuit against mass surveillance in the United States on behalf of Carolyn Jewel and other AT&T customers. When it eventually concludes, this case will…
A notice of electronic surveillance is posted near a 95-by-50-foot American flag unfurled on the side of an apartment complex in Manchester, New Hampshire, U.S., June 14, 2017.
News

Massive Crackdown Highlights Need for Better Protection of Workers

On Wednesday, United States immigration authorities arrested 680 people during raids on 7 food processing plants across the state of Mississippi, in what is likely the largest workplace immigration raid in the US in over a decade. Like many…
Workers are escorted onto a bus for transportation to a processing center following a raid by US immigration officials
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Tackling School Violence Should Still Respect Privacy, Free Expression

School is out for the summer in the United States, but concerns about shootings and other violence on campus loom large. In response, some US school districts are turning to programs that monitor students’ social media activities for…
A student checks her phone at Nathan Hale Elementary School in Chicago
News

Government Should Repeal Laws Criminalizing Illegal Entry and Reentry

Americans watching the first night of the US Democratic Party primary presidential debates heard a lot about “1325,” as candidate Julian Castro challenged others on the stage to join him in calling for a repeal of this law. That’s a…
News

Four Things You Can Ask Congress to Do Now

Prompted by public outcry over the news that children detained in US immigration holding cells don’t have enough food, water, or care, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have said they’re looking for ways to make sure that what we…
Entrance to Clint border patrol station
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Expansion of Returns, Ramped up Enforcement Risk Driving Abuses

The US Congress should urgently turn its attention to the impact of a new agreement between Mexico and the Trump administration aimed at reducing the number of migrants coming to the United States’ southern border. The deal, struck after…
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In a stunning and unprecedented assault on press freedom, the Trump administration has issued an expanded indictment of Julian Assange for publishing classified information. Much of the information was of great public interest and…
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News

Statue of Liberty’s Welcoming Words Undermined by New Rules

“Give me your rich and well-rested…yearning to breathe free.” So the Trump administration seeks to rewrite America’s traditional welcome to the persecuted: from now on the huddled masses, or anyone fleeing conflict and abuse, will have…
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News

Ruling Expands Mandatory Detention for Immigrants

The US Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that immigrants with certain criminal convictions – even those who served their time decades ago for minor crimes – may be detained indefinitely without a hearing for bail. Justice Samuel Alito’s majority…
A man holds a flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court, as the Trump v. Hawaii case regarding travel restrictions in the U.S. remained pending, in Washington, U.S., June 25, 2018.
News

US Could Use Data Demanded from UK – But Pretend It Didn’t

After heated debate, the United Kingdom has just inched closer to adopting laws that would allow the United States to demand and obtain digital evidence – such as e-mails, texts, and chats – directly from companies that are storing it…
WhatsApp and Facebook messenger icons are seen on an iPhone in Manchester , Britain March 27, 2017.
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Free Speech, Profiling, and Why the US Needs Stronger Data Protection Laws

Anyone in the US who has ever used the internet has probably had this moment: fingers hovering over the keyboard, wondering about the consequences of “liking” or searching for something. Who’s going to know we did this? What kinds of…
A 3D-printed Facebook Like symbol is displayed in front of a U.S. flag in this illustration taken, March 18, 2018.
News

Characterization of Security Threats May Feed Bias Against Minorities

Next year, the US Congress will grapple with whether to extend the USA Freedom Act, which currently imposes limits on the government’s powers to sweep up US telephone call records under Section 215 of USA Patriot Act. If history is any…
A notice of electronic surveillance is posted near a 95-by-50-foot American flag unfurled on the side of an apartment complex in Manchester, New Hampshire, U.S., June 14, 2017.
News

Families Would Be Able to Try Again to Seek Asylum in the US

After the Trump administration was slammed with lawsuits for separating migrant children and parents at the border, the US government has agreed to allow many of these parents, whose asylum claims were rejected, to reapply. It’s the…
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News

European Court Ruling Highlights Need for Checks on Data-Swapping Powers

Buried in the confirmation hearings record of former US Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo is an alarming observation about US surveillance that has never received the level of attention it deserves. A ruling…
A man and woman use their mobile phones as commuters walk past the columns of the Bank of England in the City of London, July 3, 2012.