Privacy / Featured Blogs

Officially Compromised Privacy

The essence of information privacy is control over disclosure. Whoever is responsible for the information is supposed to be able to decide who sees it. If a society values privacy, it needs to ensure that there are reasonable protections possible against disclosure to those not authorized by the information's owner. In the online world, an essential technical component for this assurance is encryption. If the encryption that is deployed permits disclosure to those who were not authorized by the information's owner, there should be serious concern about the degree of privacy that is meaningfully possible. more»

Regulation and Reason

Imagine living in a country where it was necessary to register with your community government by providing a copy of one of the following... This may be necessary in perhaps a large number of nations. However, as a United States citizen and resident, I was quite surprised when my local community issued the request. I investigated and found much to my dismay, that my community in fact was required by regulation to survey its residents on a biennial basis. more»

Help CrypTech (and Me) Make the Internet More Secure

Are you ready to help me make the Internet more secure? Here's your chance to join me in a project to create an open-source hardware device to protect email, files and other data from hackers and government spies. The CrypTech Project was founded in late 2013 after NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed that the US and other governments were exploiting weak cryptography and loose standards to gain access to citizens' email, documents, and other files. more»

Internet Society's New Policy Brief Series Provides Concise Information On Critical Internet Issues

Have you ever wanted to quickly find out information on key Internet policy issues from an Internet Society perspective? Have you wished you could more easily understand topics such as net neutrality or Internet privacy? This year, the Internet Society has taken on a number of initiatives to help fill a need identified by our community to make Internet Governance easier to understand and to have more information available that can be used to inform policymakers and other stakeholders about key Internet issues. more»

Governments Shouldn't Play Games with the Internet

Governments often use small players as pawns in their global games of chess. Two weeks ago the European Court of Justice invalidated the EU-US Safe Harbor ("Safe Harbor") framework, turning Internet businesses into expendable pawns in a government game. But for the past fifteen years, Safe Harbor allowed data flows across the Atlantic -- fostering innovation and incredible economic development. more»

Freedom on the Internet: Where Does Your Country Stand?

Out of the 3 billion users on the Internet, how many can trust that their online communications will not be monitored or censored? How many feel safe that they can express their opinions online and will not be arrested for their ideas? How many feel confident in communicating anonymously online? For us at the Internet Society this is a key element of an Internet of opportunity: Internet access is only meaningful if people can trust that their fundamental rights will be respected and protected online as well as offline. more»

Consumer Trust? Not at ICANN Compliance

Every person and every entity must have a philosophy if they are to be successful. Consumer trust is one of the key issues at the heart of keeping the Internet open as well as prosperous. The ICANN Affirmation of Commitments was signed in 2009 and has been the guiding principle for ICANN's activities going forward. The title of section 9.3 is Promoting competition, consumer trust, and consumer choice. This section is in essence the embodiment of the commitment of ICANN. more»

I'm Shocked, Shocked to Find There's Cryptanalysis Going On Here (Your plaintext, sir.)

There's been a lot of media attention in the last few days to a wonderful research paper on the weakness of 1024-bit Diffie-Hellman and on how the NSA can (and possibly does) exploit this. People seem shocked about the problem and appalled that the NSA would actually exploit it. Neither reaction is right. In the first place, the limitations of 1024-bit Diffie-Hellman have been known for a long time. RFC 3766, published in 2004, noted that a 1228-bit modulus had less than 80 bits of strength. That's clearly too little. more»

Internet Society Releases Internet of Things (IoT) Overview: Understanding the Issues and Challenges

Near the end of the first decade of this century, the world reached an Internet milestone. The number of Internet-connected devices surpassed the number of people alive on planet Earth. At the time, seven billion devices had already been connected to the Internet, and this went completely unnoticed by most people. This moment represented an important sign of the rapid pace in which we are adopting technology and embracing Internet connectivity. more»

Correcting Federal Databases: A Procedural Guide

Federal databases, such as those being compiled by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission, contain data about many people and businesses. Although some of this data may be protected personal information (PPI), there is also extensive information in federal databases that is publicly disseminated via the internet. If the information is wrong, it has the potential to be a vector of tortious mischief. more»