US transfer of Internet oversight to be delayed
Tue 18 Aug 2015, 10:31

The transfer of the technical functions of the Internet was first scheduled for September 2015, however the process will be delayed. In a blog post, a Commerce Department official said that the plan to move to international management needed more work. As a result, he said, the department would renew its contract with ICANN for at least a year — with an option to renew for an additional three years.

Private sector data mining in education
Sat 17 May 2014, 16:00

The U.S. Department of Education has called safeguarding children’s privacy a priority. However, the 1974 law, known as FERPA, explicitly gives school districts the right to share students’ personal information with private companies to further educational goals.

US presidency candidate Jeb Bush against net neutrality
Tue 22 Sep 2015, 21:00

Today, Bush issued a promise for regulatory reform that includes environment-focused regulations and the net neutrality framework passed early last year. If elected president, Jeb Bush could call for the net neutrality rules to be eradicated.

Jeb Bush campaign page reads: "The Federal Communications Commission’s Net Neutrality rule classifies all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as "public utilities," subjecting them to antiquated "common carrier" regulation. Rather than enhancing consumer welfare, these rules prohibit one group of companies (ISPs) from charging another group of companies (content companies) the full cost for using their services. Small broadband operators—like KWISP (475 customers in rural Illinois) and Wisper ISP (8,000 customers near St. Louis, Mo)—have declared under penalty of perjury that the Net Neutrality rule has caused them to cut back on investments to upgrade and expand their networks."

Second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the US human rights record in Geneva
Wed 23 Sep 2015, 22:20

Tomorrow, U.N. Human Rights Council will deliver its official response to the 348 recommendations received during the second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the U.S. human rights record in Geneva, highlighting that the U.S. government does not protect the privacy rights of non-citizens beyond its borders.

In the once-every-four-years review, other countries made 16 recommendations that focus on privacy and surveillance as areas where the U.S. needs to improve its laws and practices. Access and other civil society groups called attention to these recommendations when they took part in the U.S. State Department consultation on the UPR in July.

California adopts digital privacy law
Thu 22 Oct 2015, 22:40

Earlier this month, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a crucial law with groundbreaking implications for privacy, the Internet and free speech. Sacramento's adoption of the California Electronic Communications Privacy Act, also known as CalECPA, makes California the largest state to adopt digital privacy protections including both the content of messages and location data.

Safe Harbor annulled by the European Court of Justice
Tue 6 Oct 2015, 16:40

By a decision published this morning, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), the highest European jurisdiction, repealed the Safe Harbor agreement. This agreement in effect since 2000, allows data transfers between Europe and the United States under different versions, authorised the processing of European citizens' data by US companies, with fewer guarantees than those existing in Europe.

Max Schrems, an Austrian citizen, has put Facebook on trial since the monitoring by the NSA of his data hosted by Facebook had an impact on his freedom and privacy. The CJEU today confirmed his viewpoint by invalidating the Safe Harbor and held that the European Commission abused its power by approving it. The CJEU also affirmed that a local data protection authority may dissent a European agreement if guarantees granted to citizens were modified.