Loss of Privacy

Keeping you informed on recent losses to privacy and civil rights worldwide.

Browsing Posts tagged Bruce Schneier

Cryptography expert Bruce Schneier, author of dozens of books on computer and real-world security, was tapped by The Guardian to help the newspaper decode the NSA documents disclosed by Edward Snowden.

We met with him in Cambridge, Massachusetts to talk about the risks of widespread digital surveillance, the problem with thinking about those risks, and the ways that the public can demand change.

More at Motherboard.

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Briefing on the Technological Impact of NSA Surveillance

In light of recent revelations of the government’s surveillance practices, the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute will hold a briefing on Capitol Hill on the impact of that surveillance on users, national security, and the private sector. The briefing provided insight into how the technology and regulatory environment has led to the current situation and the ramifications of that surveillance on society and governance overall, while also considering the challenges confronting the Obama Administration’s external Review Group. Beyond the well-known issues over civil rights, this will be an important presentation on the technological implications of surveillance, and the dangers policy makers need to consider as they look to reform the government’s practices.


Opening Remarks
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose, Calif.)
Member, House Judiciary Committee
Member, House Committee on Science, Space and Technology

Sascha Meinrath
Director, Open Technology Institute and Vice President, New America Foundation

Bruce Schneier
Fellow, Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard
Author, Liars and Outliers: Enabling the Trust Society Needs to Survive

More at Ars Technica.


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Bruce Schneier gives us a glimpse of the future of the internet, and shares some of the context we should keep in mind, and the insights we need to understand, as we prepare for it. Learn more about Bruce Schneier and TEDxCambridge.


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That’s right folks. The FBI and DHS have come up with a handy list so that you can tell if you are a hotel terrorist or not.

Download (PDF, 91KB)

In case you can’t see the PDF, here’s the memo in full.

(U//FOUO) Known or possible terrorists have displayed suspicious behaviors while staying at hotels overseas—including avoiding questions typically asked of hotel registrants; showing unusual interest in hotel security; attempting access to restricted areas; and evading hotel staff. These behaviors also could be observed in U.S. hotels, and security and law enforcement personnel should be aware of the potential indicators of terrorist activity.
(U//FOUO) Possible indicators of terrorist behaviors at hotels: The observation of multiple indicators may represent—based on the specific facts or circumstances—possible terrorist behaviors at hotels:
— (U//FOUO) Not providing professional or personal details on hotel registrations—such as place of employment, contact information, or place of residence.
— (U//FOUO) Using payphones for outgoing calls or making front desk requests in person to avoid using the room telephone.
— (U//FOUO) Interest in using Internet cafes, despite hotel Internet availability.
— (U//FOUO) Non-VIPs who request that their presence at a hotel not be divulged.
— (U//FOUO) Extending departure dates one day at a time for prolonged periods.
— (U//FOUO) Refusal of housekeeping services for extended periods.
— (U//FOUO) Extended stays with little baggage or unpacked luggage.
— (U//FOUO) Access or attempted access to areas of the hotel normally restricted to staff.
— (U//FOUO) Use of cash for large transactions or a credit card in someone else’s name.
— (U//FOUO) Requests for specific rooms, floors, or other locations in the hotel.
— (U//FOUO) Use of a third party to register.
— (U//FOUO) Multiple visitors or deliveries to one individual or room.
— (U//FOUO) Unusual interest in hotel access, including main and alternate entrances, emergency exits, and surrounding routes.
— (U//FOUO) Use of entrances and exits that avoid the lobby or other areas with cameras and hotel personnel.
— (U//FOUO) Attempting to access restricted parking areas with a vehicle or leaving unattended vehicles near the hotel building.
— (U//FOUO) Unusual interest in hotel staff operating procedures, shift changes, closed-circuit TV systems, fire alarms, and security systems.
— (U//FOUO) Leaving the property for several days and then returning.
— (U//FOUO) Abandoning a room and leaving behind clothing, toiletries, or other items.
— (U//FOUO) Noncompliance with other hotel policies.

As Bruce Schneier has said, “If you ask amateurs to act as front-line security personnel, you shouldn’t be surprised when you get amateur security.”

By the way, if you read the list carefully, yours truly is a terrorist. Now, excuse me while I go report myself.

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