Court Orders Act of 2016 (CCOA)

“This draft bill is the most ludicrous, dangerous, technically illiterate tech policy proposal of the 21st century so far.” – Kevin Bankston, director of New America’s Open Technology Institute.1 Last week, privacy advocates and security experts widely denounced draft encryption … Continue reading

“This draft bill is the most ludicrous, dangerous, technically illiterate tech policy proposal of the 21st century so far.” – Kevin Bankston, director of New America’s Open Technology Institute.1

Last week, privacy advocates and security experts widely denounced draft encryption legislation leaked to The Hill newspaper as a radical assault on privacy that would make the American people less safe.2, 3

The Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016 (CCOA) would undermine Americans’ privacy, make encryption illegal and force companies to weaken the security of their products and services. We need to make sure this dangerous legislation doesn’t gain any traction in Congress.

Sign the petition: Stop the Burr-Feinstein attack on privacy and security. Click here to sign the petition.

The CCOA, which is being drafted by Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr (R-AL) and Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), is bad policy for a number of reasons. It would:

  • Make end-to-end encryption illegal by requiring companies to provide “information or data” to the government “in an intelligible format” anytime they are served with a court order. It would also require companies to decrypt secure communications “in a timely manner” or give technical assistance to law enforcement agencies attempting to do so. As Sen. Ron Wyden said in a statement, “for the first time in America, companies who want to provide their customers with stronger security would not have that choice – they would be required to decide how to weaken their products to make you less safe.”4
  • Undermine Americans’ privacy by increasing the risk that their private information and information entrusted to businesses is accessed by criminals, hackers and government entities, both domestically and abroad.
  • Make American technology companies less competitive by making it illegal for them to offer secure communications protected by end-to-end encryption, which is currently relied upon by Google, Apple, Facebook, WhatsApp and countless other companies.6 Foreign companies would not be bound by this constraint. As the executive director of a trade group that represents thousands of app developers put it, “the senators might as well take a hatchet to the entire Internet economy.”7
  • Force platforms to censor applications by requiring license distributors to ensure that all “products, services, applications or software” they distribute are able to provide the content of communications to law enforcement agencies “in an intelligible format.” This would put Apple, Google and any other company that operates a platform for software applications in the untenable position of vetting every app to make sure they aren’t secure, and censoring those that are secure.8

Tell Congress: Reject legislation that would undermine our privacy and security. Click here to sign the petition.

As we saw with the FBI’s recent attempt to force Apple to create a backdoor to access San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook’s iPhone, law enforcement agencies are determined to undermine Americans’ privacy and security, and gain access to encrypted communications. The Obama administration’s sudden reversal in that case in March – which came only after it said a third party had helped it access the content of the phone without Apple’s help – doesn’t change its desire to force companies to weaken the security of their own products. Indeed, in an April 8 letter to a district court judge presiding over a separate case, the Department of Justice maintained that “the government continues to require Apple’s assistance in accessing the data that it is authorized to search by warrant.”9

As this debate continues to play out over the coming weeks and months, we need to forcefully reject the dangerous language in the draft Burr-Feinstein bill and any other legislation that would put Americans’ privacy and security at risk by undermining encryption.

Sign the petition to Congress: Stop the Burr-Feinstein attack on privacy and security. Click here to sign the petition.

Thanks for fighting to protect our privacy and security.

Josh Nelson, Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets

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Sign the petition ?
  1. Anti-Encryption Bill from Senators Burr and Feinstein Would Be Disastrous for Cybersecurity, Tech Economy,” Open Technology Institute, March 31, 2016.
  2. Cory Bennett, “Senate encryption bill draft mandates ‘technical assistance’,” The Hill, April 7, 2016.
  3. Jenna McClaughlin, “Bill That Would Ban End-to-End Encryption Savaged by Critics,” The Intercept, April 8, 2016.
  4. Wyden Statement on Draft Bill Requiring Companies to Undermine Strong Encryption,” April 8. 2016.
  5. Max J. Rosenthal, “Tech and Privacy Experts Erupt Over Leaked Encryption Bill,” Mother Jones, April 8, 2016.
  6. Andy Greenberg, “The Senate’s Draft Encryption Bill Is ‘Ludicrous, Dangerous, Technically Illiterate’,” Wired, April 8 2016.
  7. Dawn Chmielewski, “The New Encryption Bill Isn’t Finished and Silicon Valley Already Hates it,” Recode, April 6, 2016.
  8. Andy Greenberg, “The Senate’s Draft Encryption Bill Is ‘Ludicrous, Dangerous, Technically Illiterate’,” Wired, April 8 2016.
  9. Julian Chokkattu, “Apple vs. U.S. isn’t over yet; Feinstein-Burr ‘encryption bill’ draft surfaces,” Digital Trends, April 8, 2016.

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

The unprecedented corporate power grab known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal could be headed for a possible vote in Congress later this year. But thanks to the work of thousands of CREDO activists, whether it has enough support … Continue reading

The unprecedented corporate power grab known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal could be headed for a possible vote in Congress later this year. But thanks to the work of thousands of CREDO activists, whether it has enough support to pass is still an open question.

Unfortunately, the TPP just got a major boost from some of the largest and most well-known internet companies. A trade association representing companies including Google, Amazon, Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, and Yahoo just announced their full support of the TPP.1,2

This is outrageous. The TPP is antithetical to the interests of internet users. Furthermore, many of these companies pride themselves on putting the rights and interests of their users first and claim that principles such as free speech and privacy are at the core of their mission. TPP directly undermines those values in favor of corporate profit.

Tell members of the Internet Association: Disavow endorsement of the TPP. Click here to sign the petition.

Google, Amazon, Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, and Yahoo don’t have to go along with the Internet Association’s disastrously poor decision to endorse the TPP. One of its members, Reddit, has just come out and disavowed the endorsement.3 This is why we are joining with our friends from Fight for the Future to pressure other members to do the same.

The TPP was written and negotiated in absolute secrecy, and it’s easy to see why. It would eviscerate broad swaths of regulations that protect consumers, workers, the environment, and the soundness of our financial system. And it would set up a global system where corporate profits trump the policy priorities of sovereign governments.

Passage of the TPP could mean more American jobs offshored, developing countries losing access to lifesaving medications, and unsafe foods and products pouring into our country. The deal includes countries that are notorious for human rights violations without once mentioning “human rights” in its 5,600 pages.

The deal could also mean the end of internet freedom as we know it. It would expand corporate copyright enforcement at the expense of privacy and free speech. It would criminalize tinkering and modifying products under fair use purposes. And it would allow corporations to avoid the legal and democratic process by using secretive international tribunals to attack internet users’ rights – the same tribunals that could be used to undermine environmental and consumer protections.

The members of the Internet Association have no obligation to support this wrongheaded endorsement of the TPP. And, fortunately, many of these companies would be extremely sensitive to a backlash from their own users. After all, companies like Facebook and Twitter wouldn’t have a product if it weren’t for their users’ ability to freely express themselves and create content on a daily basis.

Tell members of the Internet Association: Disavow endorsement of the TPP. Click here to sign the petition.

With the media currently focused on the corrupt practices of corporations revealed in the release of the Panama Papers,4 we have the opportunity to shine the spotlight on how the TPP is just another attempt by corporations to skirt domestic and international law.

If we can get these major internet companies to publicly reject the TPP, as Reddit just did, we can turn this pathetic and self-defeating endorsement into exactly the opposite: A major public statement against the TPP and the corporate power grab it represents.

Tell members of the Internet Association: Disavow endorsement of the TPP. Click below to sign the petition:

http://act.credoaction.com/sign/TPP_Internet?t=7&akid=17517.5084505.ftxYLO

Thank you for your activism.

Murshed Zaheed, Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets

Add your name:

Sign the petition ?
  1. Internet Association Member List.
  2. Statement In Support Of The Trans-Pacific Partnership,” Internet Association, March 30, 2016.
  3. Reddit statement on Twitter disavowing TPP endorsement,” Reddit, March 30, 2016.
  4. Panama Papers: Leaks spur global investigations,” BBC, April 4, 2016.

OneDrive not connected to Internet

Turn off Office Upload If you’re having trouble syncing Office files, the Office Upload cache system may be interfering with OneDrive sync. Try turning off the related setting in OneDrive settings. Right-click the white OneDrive cloud icon in the notification area, at the far right of the taskbar. (You might need to click the Show … Continue reading “OneDrive not connected to Internet”

Turn off Office Upload

If you’re having trouble syncing Office files, the Office Upload cache system may be interfering with OneDrive sync. Try turning off the related setting in OneDrive settings.

  1. Right-click the white OneDrive cloud icon in the notification area, at the far right of the taskbar.OneDrive app in System Tray

    (You might need to click the Show hidden icons arrow next to the notification area to see the OneDrive icon.)

  2. Click Settings, and then clear the Use Office to work on files with other people at the same time check box.

IMPORTANT   When you turn off the Use Office to work on files with other people at the same time setting, any changes that you and other people make to Office files in your OneDrive will no longer merge together automatically.

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Al Jazeera America to close down Unsustainable business model cited in decision to close as global network announces a new digital drive in US market January 13, 2016 2:11PM ET by Al Jazeera Staff Al Jazeera (Arabic: الجزيرة‎ al-ǧazīrah IPA: [æl dʒæˈziːrɐ], literally “The Island”, … Continue reading

Al Jazeera America to close down
Unsustainable business model cited in decision to close as global network announces a new digital drive in US market
January 13, 2016 2:11PM ET
by Al Jazeera Staff

Al Jazeera (Arabic: ???????? al-?az?rah IPA: [æl d?æ?zi?r?], literally “The Island”, abbreviating “The [Arabian] Peninsula“)[note] (also Aljazeera or JSC[Jazeera Satellite Channel]) is an independent[1][2] broadcaster owned by the state of Qatar through the Qatar Media Corporation and headquartered inDohaQatar. Initially launched as an Arabic news and current affairs satellite TV channel, Al Jazeera has since expanded into a network with several outlets, including the Internet and specialty TV channels in multiple languages. Al Jazeera is accessible in several world regions.

The original Al Jazeera channel’s willingness to broadcast dissenting views, for example on call-in shows, created controversies in the Arab states of the Persian Gulf. The station gained worldwide attention following the September 11, 2001 attacks, when it was the only channel to cover the war in Afghanistan live from its office there.[3] It has also recently been acclaimed for its in-depth coverage of the Arab Spring protests and revolutions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Jazeera

Cubans surf the web

This Workaround Lets 2.6 Million Cubans Surf the Web Written by J.M. PORUP December 2, 2015 // 08:00 AM EST More and more Cubans are getting access to the internet, thanks to government Wi-Fi hotspots and a loosening of trade restrictions with the US. However, many locals still don’t have access to the web or … Continue reading “Cubans surf the web”

This Workaround Lets 2.6 Million Cubans Surf the Web

Written by

J.M. PORUP

More and more Cubans are getting access to the internet, thanks to government Wi-Fi hotspots and a loosening of trade restrictions with the US. However, many locals still don’t have access to the web or can’t afford it.

That’s why not-for-profit Miami startup Apretaste set up a system to allow Cubans to browse the web via email, which more people have access to. Only about 400,000 Cubans can freely browse the web, according to Apretaste, but 2.6 million have access to email.

Tor

Tor is free software for enabling anonymous communication. The name is an acronym derived from the original software project name The Onion Router,[7] however the correct spelling is “Tor”, capitalizing only the first letter.[8] Tor directs Internet traffic through a free, worldwide, volunteer network consisting of more than seven thousand relays[9] to conceal a user’s … Continue reading Tor

Tor is free software for enabling anonymous communication. The name is an acronym derived from the original software project name The Onion Router,[7] however the correct spelling is “Tor”, capitalizing only the first letter.[8] Tor directs Internet traffic through a free, worldwide, volunteer network consisting of more than seven thousand relays[9] to conceal a user’s location and usage from anyone conducting network surveillance or traffic analysis. Using Tor makes it more difficult for Internet activity to be traced back to the user: this includes “visits to Web sites, online posts, instant messages, and other communication forms”.[10] Tor’s use is intended to protect the personal privacy of users, as well as their freedom and ability to conduct confidential communication by keeping their Internet activities from being monitored.

Onion routing is implemented by encryption in the application layer of a communication protocol stack, nested like the layers of anonion. Tor encrypts the data, including the destination IP address, multiple times and sends it through a virtual circuit comprising successive, randomly selected Tor relays. Each relay decrypts a layer of encryption to reveal only the next relay in the circuit in order to pass the remaining encrypted data on to it. The final relay decrypts the innermost layer of encryption and sends the original data to its destination without revealing, or even knowing, the source IP address. Because the routing of the communication is partly concealed at every hop in the Tor circuit, this method eliminates any single point at which the communicating peers can be determined through network surveillance that relies upon knowing its source and destination.

An adversary might try to de-anonymize the user by some means. One way this may be achieved is by exploiting vulnerable software on the user’s computer.[11] The NSA has a technique that targets outdated Firefox browsers codenamed EgotisticalGiraffe,[12] and targets Tor users in general for close monitoring under its XKeyscore program.[13] Attacks against Tor are an active area of academic research,[14][15] which is welcomed by the Tor Project itself.[16]

Computer emergency response teams (CERT)

Computer emergency response teams (CERT) are expert groups that handle computer security incidents. Alternative names for such groups include computer emergency readiness team and computer security incident response team (CSIRT). The name “Computer Emergency Response Team” was first used by the CERT Coordination Center (CERT-CC) at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). The abbreviation CERT of the … Continue reading Computer emergency response teams (CERT)

Computer emergency response teams (CERT) are expert groups that handle computer security incidents. Alternative names for such groups include computer emergency readiness team and computer security incident response team (CSIRT).

The name “Computer Emergency Response Team” was first used by the CERT Coordination Center (CERT-CC) at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). The abbreviation CERT of the historic name was picked up by other teams around the world. Some teams took on the more specific name of CSIRT to point out the task of handling computer security incidents instead of other tech support work, and because CMU was threatening to take legal action against individuals or organisations who referred to any other team than CERT-CC as a CERT. After the turn of the century, CMU relaxed its position, and the terms CERT and CSIRT are now used interchangeably.

The history of CERTs is linked to the existence of malware, especially computer worms and viruses. Whenever a new technology arrives, its misuse is not long in following. The first worm in the IBM VNET was covered up. Shortly after, a worm hit the Internet on 3 November 1988, when the so-called Morris Worm paralysed a good percentage of it. This led to the formation of the first computer emergency response team at Carnegie Mellon University under U.S. Government contract. With the massive growth in the use of information and communications technologies over the subsequent years, the now-generic term ‘CERT’/’CSIRT’ refers to an essential part of most large organisations’ structures. In many organisations the CERT evolves into a information security operations center.