I want to meet you2002/10/23 02:47

Privacy - the disappearing web
News Flashes:


Electronic Frontier Foundation - Latest bulletin Oct, 2002      ren@eff.org
      Read the full issue of EFFector at citizensontheweb
Global Internet Liberty Campaign Newsletter.
Read the GILC Alert Volume 6, Issue 7 Oct 22, 2002
 Complete newsletter is posted here
Global Internet Liberty Campaign Newsletter.
From:  Chris Chiu <CCHIU@aclu.org>
Canadian Surveillance Alert: Submit Your Comments! - Nov 2002 
* Canadian Surveillance Alert; Comment Period Extended
    The Canadian government is currently soliciting comments on the so-called "Lawful Access" plan, a broader version of the U.S. Communications Assistance to Law Enforcement Act (CALEA).  The Canadian proposal expands upon CALEA by covering Internet Service Providers, among other provisions.
    Canada's Justice Department has announced that it is extending its public  consultation on lawful access to December 16, 2002.  The comment period  was previously scheduled to close in mid-November.
    [NOTE: Readers should be aware that many countries will be revamping their surveillance laws in the near future, claiming as Canada has that such "reform" is necessary in order to comply with international obligations. One source of such obligations is the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime, a treaty signed by many nations (including the United States) in late November 2001. The COE convention has not yet been ratified by the U.S. Senate, however.
   The COE process, which mostly took place behind closed doors, appears to be the latest example of a clever U.S. government tactic: work hard in the international arena to get U.S. government views into treaties or other international instruments; then tell Congress that legislation is needed to bring the United States into conformity with international consensus. We saw this happen with the anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA, which the Administration claimed were necessary to fulfill our WIPO treaty obligations.]

Links: View the call for comments:
- web page of articles on Canada's anti terrorism legislation Bills C35 and C36 and the War in Afghanistan  written by Connie Fogal, Director, Defence of Canadian Liberty Committee

Related Links:
  • Wired
  • Slashdot.org
  • Electronic Privacy Info Center
  • Gnu.org Philosophy
  • Internet Law Journal
  • Slashdot - Lobby Against UCITA Guide
  • Freedom Forum Online
  • EU Echelon study results
  • Philosophy of the GNU Project
  • Hacker News Network
  • The Hacker Quarterly
  • The Center for Democracy & Technology



    Electronic Frontier Foundation - Do you know your online rights? Mar.2002
        Have you received a letter asking you to remove information from a Web site or stop engaging in an activity? Are you concerned about liability for information that someone else posted to your online forum? If so, this site is for you.

    At the National Post- Dec.28.2001
    Changes would allow search warrants from abroad to be executed in Canada
    - Ottawa ready to cede legal powers: Fighting cyber crime:
    Digital Millineum Copyright Act Strikes Again - July.2001
    - FBI Arrests Programmer in Las Vegas for eBook Software
    Cyber-Rights Groups Join Forces to Oppose Anti-Privacy Cybercrime Treaty
    December 2000

    WASHINGTON--An international coalition of cyberliberties and human rights groups today warned that provisions of a draft international cybercrime treaty pose a serious threat to individual privacy in the United States and worldwide.

    In a letter sent to Council of Europe (CoE) Secretary General Walter Schwimmer and its Committee of Experts on Cyber Crime, the Global Internet Liberty Campaign (GILC) said that the cyber crime convention "threatens
    the rights of the individual while extending the powers of police authorities, creates a low-barrier protection of rights uniformly across borders, and ignores highly-regarded data protection principles."

    "The new document would permit government agents to invade the privacy of law-abiding citizens," said Barry Steinhardt, Associate Director of the American Civil Liberties Union, a founding member of GILC. "We call on
    governments around the world to reject the treaty because it does not provide enough protection to fundamental human rights."

    David Sobel, General Counsel of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), also a GILC founding member, added that, "despite some minor changes from the earlier drafts, the treaty still reads like a law enforcement wish list. The only way to change that would be to open up the drafting process and allow meaningful participation from all affected interests."

    Among other things, the coalition said that the latest draft Convention on Cyber Crime (which is being spearheaded by the Council of Europe and U.S. law enforcement officials):

    * Specifically allows real-time collection and recording of Internet transmissions--thus permitting the wide scale use of controversial government spyware programs such as Carnivore.

    * Forces ordinary Internet users to turn over decryption keys and other personal information to the government--which will not only erode online privacy, but may also violate the right against self-incrimination.

    * Promotes the use of invasive techniques for virtually any crime. While the treaty contains small limitations on the use of interception, "which ... can only be used for 'serious offences to be determined by domestic law,'" this limitation may have little effect, because many countries have extremely broad definitions of serious crime for wiretapping purposes.

    Was largely created in secret--a process that is clearly "at odds with democratic decision making." The letter's signatories called on government representatives to "learn and practice responsiveness to consultation by
    incorporating and protecting human rights."

    The full letter is posted on the GILC website at:

    Book Pirates About as Frightening as Peter Pan - Sept.23
    By Gary Morton

       Wired Magazine is now featuring an article called 'Pirates Invade Book Publishing'. The article claims that a Warez site is offering links to free downloads of the entire texts of copyrighted books by famous authors. Wired says the question remains: What can the publishing industry do about this Napster-ization of books?

       It is surprising that Wired thinks this is a new issue when I e-mailed them a number of times on it. The sweeps of the web for illegal materials began with the book publishing industry. In 1997 to 1998 people who identified themselves as connected with the Science Fiction Writers of America swept the Internet forcing hundreds of web sites to remove illegal fiction texts.

       At http://frightlibrary.com I am a Canadian horror fiction and sci-fi writer with a library of my own books posted on the web for free download. These are done by me in high quality html format. In 98 I had a few short stories posted that I copied from other sites on the web. During the sweep attempts were made to contact literary agents, get me sued, etc. I removed the work in question and now some public domain texts remain while nearly all my links to classics are to stuff located at Gutenberg and other sites.

       Ray Bradbury was one writer, who threatened to get me through his agent. After I removed the offending story, a tiny tale from the fifties, I was warned that, "WE ARE WATCHING YOU."

       Little unauthorized fiction work remains on the web. It is surprising that an organ like SFWA and writers like Bradbury aided a book burning crusade and campaign of emailing sites across the web asking them not to do business with me - in effect blacklisting and discrediting me.

       It is more amazing when you consider that I couldn't even give their work away. A massive majority of visitors to my site have always read my tales, which are new. Few ever bother with the public domain texts. And almost no one read Bradbury's tale when it was on there. If anything I probably did him a favour with the free promotion.

       Back at that time Michael Hart of Project Gutenberg told me that you couldn't post any fiction text on the net without someone somewhere claiming copyright violations and threatening to sue.

        Wired, through this new attempt to create a scare, is damaging the web and those of us that put up the non-commercial educational and literary web. A new campaign of persecution of non-corporate sites will begin.

       It is bad enough that commercial news sites list only links to terrible corporate book sites, while ignoring genuinely free literary libraries.

       Now they have cast their lot in with Big Brother, Bradbury, the Book Burners and other dinosaurs. Soon they will be WATCHING ALL OF US.

    University police confiscate music computer - Sept.16.2000
    USA -  Campus police at Oklahoma State University confiscated a student's computer over allegations from the recording industry that it was used to distribute copyright material.
       Police seized a computer from a 19-year-old male student's room on Sept. 5. Earlier that day, the Recording Industry Association of America had notified the school about the alleged distributions.
       Authorities identified the computer through a campus computer center.
       Seized were a monitor, keyboard, two CD recorders, a scanner and a printer. Police alleged that the student allowed visitors to download music files and some movies through a FTP server site.
    ACLU Action Update: Stop Censorship in Internet Service - September 7, 2000
        The Internet is quickly becoming an essential medium for communication, and high-speed access promises to be its future. But it will be a very different future if the few companies who control the high-speed Internet access wires are allowed to decide what content we can receive.  Because high-speed telephone service (DSL) is proving more difficult to deploy than cable, cable is dominating the residential market for high-speed access. And the cable market will soon be dominated by two companies that already decide which television stations their cable subscribers can see. In fact, we are now beginning to see troubling signs that they intend to become just as selective in terms of Internet content.
    Corporate censorship represents a significant potential threat to online free speech.  Now is the time to ensure that cable companies open their wires to the most robust content possible.
    Take Action!  You can read more about broadband access and send a letter to the Chairmen of AOL, AT&T, the Federal Communications Commission and the Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission to ask that they preserve free speech in the Internet's future at:
    The Right To Read: Time Limited Textbooks - August 28.2000
    (facts reposted from Slashdot)
       Vital Source Technologies is now providing time-limited medical textbooks to universities. Password protected books as predicted in The Right To Read by Richard Stallman are finally becoming a reality." Starting on Oct. 28, (when the other part of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act comes into effect), you could face a civil lawsuit and criminal penalties of up to five years in jail and a fine of $500,000 for reading someone else's textbook.
    See the NYU FAQ
    and the Advogato discussion
    or the company crowing about new revenue opportunities.
    The right to read by Richard Stallman is at

    ANALYSIS OF THE DECISION AGAINST 2600 - 08/21/00 - at 2600 News
    A ruling in a lawsuit from the movie industry prevents 2600 magazine from even linking to a computer program the industry dislikes.
    Fifty Percent Jump in Low-income Households Online - Aug.21.2000
       Fifty percent more low-income households have logged onto the Internet, compared to a year ago, according to a study by Media Metrix, Inc. in New York.
       In June, the number of new Internet surfers in households earning less than $25,000 a year jumped to 7.5 million, up from 5 million the same period last year. The increase makes low-income households the fastest growing segment in the online population.
       Declines in computer prices and increased Web access in academic and business environments have made the Web more readily available to people, regardless of their household income.
       High Income families spend less time surfing than the low-income folks who explore the Web. Those in the lowest income group spent an average of three hours longer than the average time spent by the entire online population.
       Since the factors increasing online usage by low-income people also exist in Canada, a similar jump should register here.
    Gnutella Replaces Godzilla in Corporate Media -  Aug.9.2000
       Corporate Media thinks a file sharing program called Gnutella is the greatest threat to our way of life since Communism. And they want employers to discriminate against hackers.
    - read the full article

    Napster Judge Steps over Copyright and Attacks the Public Good &ndash; July.2000
       U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall stopped the trading of copyrighted music via Napster and the Recording Industry Association of America sees this as a big victory.
       Personally I don&rsquo;t use Napster as I see sharing files from my computer with the world as letting in intruders. What makes it even worse is that one of those Intruders could be Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich trying to nail me for copyright violations.
       The judge should have stayed in the bounds of copyright. Instead she had to scoff at the idea of anything being free and say that a second reason for shutting Napster is because it raised barriers to the recording industry&rsquo;s entry into the business of distributing music online.
       Basically the judge has set a precedent case and intellectual property lawyers see it as setting the groundwork for what is going to be the future of the Internet.
       The precedent is that corporations can sue to shut down anyone raising barriers to their profit. Basically they can sue anyone providing free content. Publishers, for example, could sue Stephen King, citing the barriers he is creating by giving away stuff for free.
       It sets a precedent that says the Internet is an instrument of Corporate Profit and not of the Public Good. And that is really bad. The World Wide Web is being handed over to greedy interests that want it as a system of distribution for profit, and nothing more.
       I think the judge&rsquo;s ruling means that even people who hate Napster have to back Napster&rsquo;s appeal. And at least see the ruling softened so it can&rsquo;t be used to kill the public Internet.
    --------Napster Shut but Other programs available- July.2000
       The file sharing program Napster for music MP3 files has been shut down by a US judge pending appeal.
    Distributed networks,Scour Exchange, iMesh and CuteMX can be used to search for audio, video and images. Gnutella and Freenet are file agnostic and can be used to share all file types.
    All these programs are available on the Internet and are free to download and use.
    Big Brother bill passes in Britain - Wed Jul 26

        Wide-sweeping legislation passed in the British House of Commons will allow the police to intercept private e-mails. The British government says it's necessary to combat crime. But human rights organizations, civil liberties groups and the e-commerce industry have all condemned the bill.

       The bill is called the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Bill and critics say it's one of the biggest abuses of civil liberties by a Western government to date.

       The proposal is to install black boxes into the premises of Internet service providers and these boxes would sit and watch all the traffic passing through, but be programmed with a list of targets and supposedly pluck out those pieces of information which it was then authorized to relay to a new monitoring system which is being established in the M15 centre.

       Sending coded or encrypted e-mails won't get you off the hook. Security authorities can make people hand over their encryption codes, and they won't need a warrant from a judge to do it.

       Critics say the bill is a disaster with wide-ranging impact. William Roebuck is with a trade association that monitors standards in e-commerce. He says the bill is making people uneasy about investing in the U.K. It will cost Internet service providers money to install the black box monitors and it could also cost them their clients' trust. The police can impose a secrecy clause on the Internet firms forbidding them from telling their own clients that their encryption codes have been handed over to M15.

       Human rights groups also condemn the bill. Halya Gowan of Amnesty International says testimony gathered from people abroad in vulnerable positions - opposition leaders, prisoners of conscience - is under threat. "If we are unable to maintain confidentiality of these statements it may be very difficult to get people to write to us," she said.

       It is still thought that organized criminals and a small minority of computer geeks can easily circumvent the effects of this bill, making it nothing more than a police state tool to use on the general public.
    New Microsoft Rip-off - software-for-rent- July.2000
       Microsoft plans to sell software through subscriptions, and to recruit service providers to its new strategy. It plans to sell software through application service providers (ASPs), or companies hosting software programs that are usable over the Web. Under the new plan, businesses will not buy copies of Windows or Microsoft Office software with a PC. Instead, they will rent software from ASPs and pay a per-user monthly fee. The more applications each individual uses, the larger the monthly fee. A review of the pilot program shows that the subscription method will cost a lot more. Microsoft has taken their shrink-wrap software price and divided it by 24 months. Because most Microsoft customers keep their software more than 24 months, they are going to pay through the nose.
    Microsoft IE 5.5 angers Web standards advocates - July.2000
       Microsoft is under fire from Web standards advocates over its latest browser. IE 5.5 lets web developers offer their visitors complex applications as long as visitors aren't using other browsers. Microsoft is introducing new proprietary applications tags and dropping any sort of adherence to basic industry standards for Web technologies like HTML.
       Web pages created to work for IE now won't work with browsers from Netscape, Opera Software and other providers. Even the download page for version 5.5 came up blank for Netscape users Wednesday. Microsoft's proprietary shortcuts are under fire from the Web Standards Project (WaSP), an advocacy group that formed to goad software companies to adhere closely to World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) recommendations. WaSP project leader Jeffrey Zeldman urged developers to reconsider before adopting such technologies.
    Cell Tracking you everywhere - July.2000
       Cell-Loc is makes it easy to track anyone, by allowing them to pull up a map of the person's location on a personal digital assistant (PDA) or computer.
       The Calgary-based company develops wireless, location-based services. Fleet Tracking lets businesses such as taxi companies and delivery services keep tabs on their employees. L411, a consumer-oriented directory assistance, allows subscribers to call switchboard operators who can view a map and identify where a call is being made from. The new system allows anyone with access to the right user name and password to go to the website and pull up  a map of the cellphone user's location.
       Privacy groups such as the Electronic Privacy Information Center are shocked at the possibility of individuals abusing their right to access this information and track people without consent. Someone who gets a hold of another person's user-id number and password would be able to see where the person is, anytime, anywhere.
    Carnivore Spies for FBI - July.2000
       Carnivore is like a kind of Internet wiretap that tracks emails and other electronic communications.  FBI agents use it after obtaining a court order that allows them to intercept the communications of a criminal suspect. The FBI would install the specialized computer on the networks of Internet providers, where it "sniffs" out all mail and records sent to or from the target of an investigation.
       The American Civil Liberties Union urged Congress to amend outdated electronic privacy laws following news of Carnivore.
       "There's no clear law that authorizes Carnivore," said ACLU associate director Barry Steinhardt. "But the FBI and the Justice Department ... will argue that there's no clear law that prohibits it. And Congress needs to put some real limits on what law enforcement can do."
       The ACLU urged Canady's committee to prohibit Carnivore-type systems or dragnets that give law enforcement officials access to large quantities of communications.
       "It is a system for intercepting huge volumes of email and it's a system that was never contemplated by Congress when it passed the Electronic Communications Privacy Act" of 1986, Steinhardt said.
    Is Technology Killing Leisure Time? - by Jon Katz  at Slashdot - July.2000

    Click here for the 2nd  page of news

    Global Internet Liberty Campaign Newsletter.
    From:  Chris Chiu <CCHIU@aclu.org>
    GILC Alert
    Volume 6, Issue 7
    22 October 2002

    Welcome to the Global Internet Liberty Campaign Newsletter.

    Welcome to GILC Alert, the newsletter of the Global Internet Liberty
    Campaign. We are an international organization of groups working for
    cyber-liberties, who are determined to preserve civil liberties and human
    rights on the Internet.
    We hope you find this newsletter interesting, and we very much hope that you
    will avail yourselves of the action items in future issues.
    If you are a part of an organization that would be interested in joining
    GILC, please contact us at <gilc@gilc.org>.
    If you are aware of threats to cyber-liberties that we may not know about,
    please contact the GILC members in your country, or contact GILC as a whole.
    Please feel free to redistribute this newsletter to appropriate forums.

    Free expression
    [1] Greek government backs down on gaming ban
    [2] New proposals to enhance digital fair use rights
    [3] China arrests another Net critic
    [4] Protests grow over Spanish LSSI Net speech law
    [5] US bill would target foreign Net censorship
    [6] Internet Archive censors anti-Scientology site
    [7] Cybercafe chain faces Hollywood copyright threats
    [8] US gov't renews domain system deal with ICANN
    [9] UN report: African Net usage growing, but still lags

    [10] Hollywood asks court for Verizon Internet user records
    [11] Leaked memo reveals US gov't illegal email spying
    [12] Flap over Norwegian Net portal tracking scheme
    [13] U.S. Court hears Internet provider warrants case
    [14] Amazon.com privacy policy revisions criticized
    [15] Digital Angel tracking implant still in legal limbo
    [16] Belgium plans national digital signature ID cards
    [17] Bugbear computer virus still causing trouble
    [18] US cybersecurity report released
    [19] British Celldar trackers worry privacy experts
    [20] Korean cell phone tracking bill poses privacy problems
    [21] New campaign coming against data retention proposals

    [22] Upcoming Central European Cyberliberties Conference

    [1] Greek government backs down on gaming ban
    Greek authorities have made an apparent retreat in a heated controversy over
    a new law that bans the public playing of electronic games.

    The law, which was approved about three months ago, had been applied to
    games played on computers, mobile phones and consoles in cybercafes and
    other public places. Although it was supposedly adopted as an anti-gambling
    move, the measure did not distinguish between gambling and computer games.
    The government then arrested nearly 50 individuals for allegedly violating
    the measure; the first case involved 2 people who were playing chess online.
    These developments generated fierce protests from many citizens who feared
    that the law would be used as a pretext for government repression. Indeed,
    more than 30 000 people signed an online petition against the legislation,
    and hundreds of demonstrators appeared during a court hearing for one of the
    arrestees, shouting "No to censorship on the Internet."

    Since then, the government has issued a memorandum to police stations around
    the country, stating that only the playing of gambling-related games should
    be prosecuted under the new law. The document also mentions that the measure
    should cause "no problem" for "any citizen, or tourist visiting Greece,
    using or owning electronic or other games such as Playstation, Gameboy, XBox
    etc." While opponents of the legislation were pleased with this latest move,
    there is concern that the memorandum itself might not have the force of law,
    and that a court challenge may be necessary to prevent future government

    For more on the petition against the Greek gaming ban, click

    See "Greece lets the games begin again," Reuters, 25 September 2002 at

    See also "Reprieve for Greek gamers," BBC News Online, 24 September 2002 at

    For press coverage of this story in German (Deutsch), read "Darf man das?"
    Spiegel Online, 19 September 2002 at

    See also "Chaos in griechischen Internet-Cafes: Erlaubt oder verboten?"
    Heise Online, 19 September 2002 at

    [2] New proposals to enhance digital fair use rights

    Several efforts are underway that may help protect traditional free speech
    rights in the digital domain.

    Two recently unveiled bills would amend the much-criticized United States
    Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). One plan, sponsored by U.S.
    Representative Rick Boucher, would permit users to circumvent copy
    protection schemes "if such circumvention does not result in an infringement
    of the copyright" in a given work, which would ostensibly include making use
    of the work for research, public commentary, and educational or other
    salutary purposes. The bill would also allow the manufacture, distribution
    and "noninfringing use" of hardware or software "capable of enabling
    significant noninfringing use of a copyright work"-a provision that might
    apply to such items as music sharing software and optical disc burners. The
    proposal would also require special labeling for copy-protected CDs.

    The other bill, submitted by fellow Rep. Zoe Lofgren, would permit users to
    circumvent copy protection schemes "if ... necessary to make a
    non-infringing use" when the copyright owner "fails to make publicly
    available the necessary means to perform such non-infringing use without
    additional cost or burden" to the user.  Lofgren's proposal would also
    permit people who lawfully obtain or receive digital works (which presumably
    includes compact discs and Internet streaming broadcasts) "to reproduce,
    store, adapt or access" such works (1) for archival purposes, so long as
    illegal copies are destroyed or "rendered permanently inaccessible," and (2)
    to be able to enjoy the work on a "preferred digital media device," so long
    as the "performance or display is not public." Additionally, the bill would
    explicitly extend the "first sale doctrine" to cover digital works; this
    doctrine essentially allows lawfully purchased copyrighted items (such as
    books) to be resold or traded without having to get copyright holder's

    These plans have been warmly received by many cyberlibertarians, who have
    excoriated the DMCA for its negative impact on free expression. In a
    statement, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF-a GILC member) noted:
    "Since the DMCA's passage in 1998, it has been used not against copyright
    pirates, but instead to chill the legitimate activities of scientists,
    journalists, and computer programmers. Rep. Boucher's bill will go a long
    way toward restoring in the digital world the traditional balance between
    the rights of the public and those of copyright owners." EFF also welcomed
    "Rep. Lofgren's bill as an important step toward creating a fair and
    balanced copyright law for the digital age."

    Meanwhile, in an unusual move, the U.S. Copyright Office is asking for
    suggestions about possible new exceptions to the DMCA. EFF's Fred von
    Lohmann explained that though the Copyright Office's announcement came with
    little fanfare, it nevertheless constitutes an important opportunity to curb
    the DMCA's excesses: "We're already planning to submit comments and organize
    comments by others. We're hoping that by the time the December deadline
    rolls around, a lot more people will be aware of this." The deadline for
    public comments is 18 December 2002.

    The text of the Boucher bill (in PDF format) is available under

    Further details about the Boucher bill are posted at

    The text of the Lofgren bill is available under

    For more background information on the Lofgren bill, click

    To read an EFF press release regarding these proposals, click

    For more on the DMCA's effect on computer research, read John Lettice, "If I
    tell you that I'll have to kill you: Red Hat fights the DMCA," The Register
    (UK), 16 October 2002 at

    Read "Bills Would Bolster the Right to Copy," Washington Post, 4 October
    2002, page E5, at

    For coverage in German (Deutsch), read "US-Abgeordnete fordert Recht auf
    private Kopie digitaler Medien," Heise Online, 2 October 2002 at

    The U.S. Copyright Office announcement is available (in PDF format) under

    See "Anti-hacking copyright law to get review," CNet News, 11 October 2002

    [3] China arrests another Net critic
    Chinese government agents have arrested another author for his Internet

    Chen Shaowen allegedly published 40 articles that were published on several
    foreign Web sites. His activities raised the eyebrows of Chinese
    authorities, who eventually arrested him for "using the Internet to subvert
    state power." State-run media accused him of "repeatedly browsing
    reactionary websites, ... fabricating, distorting and exaggerating relevant
    facts, and vilifying the Chinese Communist Party and the socialist system."
    There is no word yet as to whether Chen has formally been charged.

    The arrest was met with protests from free speech advocates. The Committee
    to Protect Journalists (CPJ-a GILC member) issued a strongly worded letter
    condemning the Chinese "government's routine use of subversion charges to
    suppress online speech. Chen Shaowen has done nothing more than peacefully
    express an independent viewpoint, a right that is protected under China's
    constitution as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political
    Rights, which China has signed. We call for Chen's immediate and
    unconditional release."

    Meanwhile, reports indicate that China has taken several other moves to
    restrict the flow of information via the Internet. Chinese authorities have
    purportedly begun using new technology involves the use of "packet sniffers"
    that can detect keywords in transmissions that pass through the Information
    Superhighway. Once detected, not only can the information itself be blocked,
    but the recipient's computer crashes, forcing the user to shutdown or
    reboot. Chinese officials have also banned minors from entering cybercafes
    and barred the building of such establishments near schools.

    The CPJ letter about Chen Shaowen is posted at

    Read "China arrests Web writer for subversion," Reuters, 25 September 2002

    For coverage in German (Deutsch), read "Haftgrund Internet," Spiegel Online,
    25 September 2002 at

    For more on China's rumored new sniffer-based censorship system, read
    Geoffrey York, "China stifling dissent on Internet," The Globe and Mail, 5
    October 2002, page A14 at

    More information is available from the Human Rights in China website under

    Read "China passes tough new regulations on Internet access and cafes,"
    China News Digest, 13 October 2002 at

    See "China bans minors from Net cafes," Reuters, 11 October 2002 at

    [4] Protests grow over Spanish LSSI Net speech law
    A new Spanish law is continuing to draw fierce criticism over its impact on
    free speech over the Internet.

    Spanish government officials have signaled their intention to use LSSI
    (short for La Ley de Servicios de la Sociedad de la Informacion y de
    Comercio electronico) to control online content. Towards that end, the
    measure, among other things, requires webmasters to publish personal
    information about themselves through their webpages. Violators may be forced
    to pay EUR 600 000 in fines. In addition, the bill includes provisions
    allowing customer data to be retained for up to 1 year, which government
    agents may access with the consent of a judge. Objections from cyber-rights
    activists led the government to alter language contained in a previous LSSI
    draft that permitted government "administrative authorities" to shut down
    websites-a power that, in the past, had required court approval.

    Although the final version leaves the power to close Internet sites in the
    hands of judges, many experts believe that the law still poses a serious
    threat to freedom of expression online. Jose Manuel Gomez of Kriptopolis (a
    GILC member) warned that LSSI clearly was "passed for controlling web
    contents and to force editors to self-censure. As a protest we've closed our
    own site (about 500,000 visits per month until then) from October 1. The Law
    became effective on October 12 and from that very moment many Web sites have
    *spontaneously* decided to go off-line to support the closedown, to protest
    against the law or simply because of fears of the way that inquisitorial new
    law will be applied in Spain from now on." The list of organizations that
    have closed down their sites now stands at over 200, and several other
    groups (including fellow GILC member Stop 1984) have expressed their
    solidarity against LSSI. Meanwhile, there is a campaign underway to have the
    law examined by the Spanish Constitutional Council.

    For more on Kriptopolis' anti-LSSI campaign, click

    To read the text of the LSSI law, click

    A special dossier on this subject (created by the Madrid newspaper El Pais)
    is available under

    Read John Leyden, "Web sites blackout over Spanish monitoring law," The
    Register (UK), 14 October 2002 at

    For further information in German (Deutsch), see Ralf Streck, "Umstrittenes
    spanisches Internetgesetz in Kraft," Heise Telepolis, 14 October 2002 at

    [5] US bill would target foreign Net censorship

    Technical measures to route around various national Internet censorship
    schemes might soon get a boost.

    United States Representatives Chris Cox and Tom Lantos have introduced a
    bill to would create an Office of Global Internet Freedom. The Director of
    this entity would "develop and implement a comprehensive global strategy to
    combat state-sponsored and state-directed Internet jamming, and persecution
    of those who use the Internet." The new body would also compile annual
    reports on this subject, including a list of "countries that pursue policies
    of Internet censorship, blocking and other abuses; provide information
    concerning the government agencies or quasi-governmental organizations that
    implement Internet censorship, and describe with the greatest particularity
    practicable the technological means by which such blocking and other abuses
    are accomplished." The yearly budget for this Office is pegged at US $50
    million for 2 years.

    A number of experts hope that the bill, if passed, will improve the ability
    of people worldwide to speak freely online. Cory Doctorow at the Electronic
    Frontier Foundation (EFF-a GILC member) explained that the bill "isn't about
    imposing one country's ideology on another, but rather about letting people
    freely choose which ideologies, ideas and people to be exposed to and making
    up their own mind about what's right. Rather than broadcasting any nation's
    message, this is allowing people to receive any message they choose to

    The text of the bill (in PDF format) is available under

    Read Mitch Wagner, "Fighting Net Censorship Abroad," Wired News, 3 October
    2002 at

    [6] Internet Archive censors anti-Scientology site

    For the second time this year, legal threats have led an organization to
    remove links to a website that protests a controversial religious sect.

    The Internet Archive is an initiative to build "a digital library of
    Internet sites and other cultural artifacts in digital form."  Until
    recently, the Archive included webpages from Xenu.net, which contains
    material that criticizes the Church of Scientology. A lawyer representing
    the Scientologists sent a letter to the Archive with a curious claim.
    Although the text of the letter itself has not been disclosed to the public,
    according an Archive spokesperson, the Church of Scientology "asserted
    ownership of" the Xenu-related webpages stored by the Archive, despite the
    fact that all of the pages were actually created by the proprietor of
    Xenu.net, Andreas Heldal-Lund. The Archive subsequently barred access to the
    contested pages; Archive visitors who wished to see the Xenu.net material
    received error messages saying that the requested information was "not

    The incident came several months after a lawyer representing the
    Scientologists sent a letter to Internet portal company Google claiming that
    Xenu.net's activities violated the United States Digital Millennium
    Copyright Act (DMCA) and demanding that the search engine remove any links
    to the site. Google initially deleted links to numerous Xenu-related
    webpages, but later restored some Xenu.net listings within a few days. This
    apparent attempt to silence online criticism through claims of copyright
    infringement had generated strong concern from many free speech experts.

    The Internet Archive home page is located at

    Read Lisa M. Bowman, "Net archive silences Scientology critic," CNet News,

    For further information in German (Deutsch), read "Internet-Archiv blockiert
    Scientology-Kritiker," Heise Online, 25 September 2002 at

    [7] Cybercafe chain faces Hollywood copyright threats

    A global business mogul has lashed out at the recording industry as one of
    his businesses is locked in a battle over alleged copyright violations.

    Stelios Haji-Iannou is the architect of the EasyGroup business empire, which
    includes the European airline EasyJet and the EasyInternet Café chain.
    Several music companies, including Sony Music and the British Phonographic
    Industry (which represents Universal, Virgin and EMI) have sued EasyGroup,
    claiming that that it should be liable for music that allegedly has been
    downloaded illegally by EasyInternet Café customers. Sony went so far as to
    ask the court for a "gag order" to prevent public discussion of the
    dispute-a request that was denied.

    Haji-Iannou blasted the lawsuit, calling it "crazy," and complained about
    the entertainment industry's harsh treatment of the Internet community: "The
    record companies are criminalising ordinary users. What we're saying is that
    they have to give people a way to getting music without breaking the law.
    They are more interested in protecting their profit margins. ... They don't
    understand that their model of doing business can't survive. They are going
    to be squeezed out if they don't adapt."

    Indeed, a number of entertainment company leaders are now starting focus
    more of their energies on improved music download systems rather than legal
    threats. Towards that end, OD2, a digital music company founded by singing
    legend Peter Gabriel, sponsored a special Digital Download Day where
    Internet users could legally sample and download songs for free. The
    promotional event, which received support from several major music labels
    including EMI, BMG and Warner Music, proved extremely popular, as some 15
    000 users visited DigitalDownloadDay.com every hour and the website's
    servers struggled to cope with the strain.

    For more on the EasyInternet Café case, read Richard Adams, "Digital piracy
    spat goes to court," The Guardian, 27 September 2002 at

    See Graeme Wearden, "EasyInternetCafe faces gag in CD-burning row," ZDNet
    UK, 19 September 2002 at

    For more on Digital Download Day, read Owen Gibson, "Let the music
    download," The Guardian, 7 October 2002 at

    See "Free download day a hit with fans," Reuters, 3 October 2002 at

    See also "Fans 'swamp' download offer," BBC News Online, 3 October 2002 at

    For press coverage in German (Deutsch), read "'Digital Download Day': Zeit
    fur Zuckerbrot," Spiegel Online, 2 October 2002 at

    [8] US gov't renews domain system deal with ICANN
    Despite calls to the contrary, the United States government has agreed to
    let a controversial organization run the Internet domain name system for
    another year.

    The U.S. Commerce Department has renewed and revised its Memorandum of
    Understanding (MoU) with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and
    Numbers (ICANN). The agreement, which was scheduled to expire last month,
    will now last until 30 September 2003. The decision came despite concern
    from many observers over ICANN's apparently undemocratic ways. A number of
    public interest groups either had called for tougher standards to be
    inserted into the MoU or for the Commerce Department to open up a bidding
    process that might allow other organizations to take over ICANN's job.
    Ironically, in announcing the deal, U.S. assistant commerce secretary Nancy
    Victory admitted that her department "is frankly disappointed that ICANN's
    progress on the MoU tasks thus far has moved so slowly."

    Indeed, soon after the renewal of the MoU, an ICANN committee proposed new
    bylaws that would radically change the way the organization deals with the
    general public. For example, ICANN would no longer hold direct public
    elections for Board seats, but instead would have an official Nominating
    Committee and several Supporting Organizations each select Directors. The
    Bylaws would also essentially allow ICANN's Board to keep its discussions
    and decisions secret when they relate to "personnel or employment matters,
    legal matters (to the extent the Board determines it is necessary or
    appropriate to protect the interests of ICANN), matters that ICANN is
    prohibited by law or contract from disclosing publicly, and other matters
    that the Board determines, by a three-quarters (3/4) vote of Directors
    present at the meeting and voting, are not appropriate for public
    distribution." In addition, ICANN would appoint an "international
    arbitration provider" to handle requests for independent review of ICANN
    decisions; parties that make such requests but do not win risk having to pay
    "all costs of the IRP Provider" as well as their own expenses.

    ICANN is expected to discuss these changes during meetings in Shanghai at
    the end of this month. Also on the conference agenda are negotiations to
    transfer control of the .org top-level domain to the Internet Society, and
    implementation of internationalized domain names.

    The revised MoU is posted under

    A U.S. government press release regarding the revised MoU is available at

    To read proposed new bylaws for ICANN, click

    An ICANN press release on its .org decision is posted at

    Read "Non-profit net name gets new owner," BBC News Online, 15 October 2002

    See Robert MacMillan, "Internet Society Picked As Manager of '.org',"
    Washington Post, 15 October 2002, page E5 at

    For more information on the upcoming ICANN conference in Shanghai, click

    [9] UN report: African Net usage growing, but still lags

    We have come far, but we still have so far to go.

    That is essentially the message presented by a new report from the United
    Nations Information and Communications Technologies Task Force regarding
    African Internet usage. Among other things, the report indicates that more
    Africans are online than ever before. The study cites statistics showing
    that, during the last 18 months, the number of Internet dial-up connections
    in Africa has increased by 20 percent, while the rate of growth in Internet
    connections through corporate or shared networks is still higher. Meanwhile,
    the number of mobile phones activated during the last 5 years has exceeded
    the number of landlines installed over the past 100 years.

    However, the extent of Internet connectivity in Africa varies greatly from
    region to region, and generally falls far short of the levels seen on other
    continents. In many areas of Africa, approximately 1 in 250 people use the
    Internet; by comparison, nearly half the populations of both North America
    and in Europe are online. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan stressed the
    importance of efforts to bridge this Digital Divide: "It is not, of course,
    a magic formula that is going to solve all the problems. But it is a
    powerful tool for economic growth and poverty eradication, which can
    facilitate the integration of African countries into the global economy."

    Read "Internet, Mobile Phones Taking Off in Africa-UN," This Day (Nigeria),
    3 October 2002 at

    See "Africans embrace mobiles and the net," BBC News Online, 2 October 2002

    [10] Hollywood asks court for Verizon Internet user records

    A United States court has heard oral arguments as to whether a major
    Internet service provider (ISP) must divulge personal information about one
    of its customers to several entertainment conglomerates.

    The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has requested data
    concerning a customer of telecom giant Verizon. The RIAA claims that the
    individual in question had engaged in copyright infringement through
    Internet peer-to-peer music file trading. The Association has argued that
    the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) allows it to gather such
    information without having to file a lawsuit first. More specifically, the
    RIAA has cited a portion of the DMCA which says that copyright owners can
    request a U.S. Federal court to subpoena "information sufficient to identify
    the alleged infringer" from a "service provider."

    Several cyberliberties groups, including GILC members Computer Professionals
    for Social Responsibility, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the
    Electronic Privacy Information Center, filed a friend-of-the-court brief
    asking the court to reject the RIAA's request, claiming that it will
    undermine individual privacy online and chill anonymous free speech. Telecom
    companies are also concerned about the potential liability and costs they
    could face should such requests be permitted under the law; Eric Holder, who
    represents Verizon, explained: "We don't want to be the policeman in this

    During the hearing, presiding judge John Bates gave few clear indications as
    to which way he would rule. Although Bates complained that the "statute is
    not organized as being consistent with the argument for either side," he
    discounted record industry claims of illegal activity and necessity: "Here,
    there's only an allegation of infringement." A formal ruling is expected

    See "Online Music Piracy: Naming Names," Associated Press, 4 October 2002 at

    Read Declan McCullagh, "Verizon, RIAA in copyright showdown," CNet News, 4
    October 2002 at

    For coverage in German (Deutsch), read "Musikindustrie lasst gegen Verizon
    nicht locker," Heise Online, 7 October 2002 at

    The aforementioned amicus brief is available via

    [11] Leaked memo reveals US gov't illegal email spying

    Can law enforcement agents be trusted to protect the privacy of innocent

    That is the question that is being posed in the wake of a newly declassified
    United States government memorandum. The memo, which was sent to all field
    offices of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), discloses several
    incidents attributed to "difficulties in ... management of electronic
    surveillances and physical searches" authorized under the Foreign
    Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). In one such case, due to alleged
    mistakes in renewing a given search warrant, an FBI field office illegally
    intercepted email messages "even though there was no authorization" to do so
    under the relevant warrant. In another instance, FBI agents captured and
    listened to the mobile phone conversations of an innocent person, without
    realizing that the suspect had relinquished the account and that the phone
    company had transferred the targeted phone number to another person. The
    memo also admits that other violations such as "unauthorized searches,
    incorrect addresses, and incorrect interpretations" of warrants had occurred

    These revelations have generated anger among civil rights advocates and a
    number of politicians. U.S. Congressman William Delahunt said that even if
    these privacy violations were unintentional, they demonstrated "an
    incredible level of incompetence." Similarly, U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy
    warned that "the extent, variety and seriousness of the violations recounted
    in this FBI memo show again that the secret FISA process breeds sloppiness
    unless there's adequate oversight."

    The memo (in PDF format) is available under

    Read Dan Eggen, "FBI Misused Secret Wiretaps, According to Memo," Washington
    Post, 10 October 2002 at

    For further information on FISA issues, visit the Electronic Privacy
    Information Center (EPIC-a GILC member) website under

    [12] Flap over Norwegian Net portal tracking scheme
    Privacy experts remain concerned over the way two Internet portals collect
    and handle user personal information.

    Previously, consumer watchdogs Public Information Research had filed a
    formal complaint with the Norwegian government against Fast Search and
    AlltheWeb.com. According to the complaint, the two companies had used tiny
    image files, known as "webbugs", to track site visitors. More specifically,
    these webbugs were located at the bottom of the webpages, and allegedly
    allowed users to be identified by their Internet protocol numbers and search
    queries. Additionally, users who stayed long enough on the sites would
    receive text files or "cookies" from Internet advertising giant DoubleClick,
    which could also be used for tracking purposes. PIR argued that this
    practice "is especially serious because this information is transmitted
    quietly to DoubleClick with every search results page, whether or not the
    searcher ever clicks on any ad served by DoubleClick. In other words, it
    appears that DoubleClick is building up their profiling capacity at a rate
    of 2 million queries per day, many of which will end up with unique ID
    numbers from their cookie." Neither company had posted a privacy policy
    delineating these alleged practices.

    Not long afterwards, both firms published privacy statements on their
    websites that mentioned, among other things, their relationships with
    DoubleClick and their search query tracking systems. However, a spokesperson
    for PIR expressed less-than-total satisfaction with the companies' latest
    moves, and noted that, for instance, the firms were continuing to collect
    personal data about visitors using webbugs. "The only way to disable this
    Web bug is to use a browser that allows you to block third-party images.
    There aren't many browsers that can do this, and setting this option can
    hamper surfing. Still, this is a big improvement over no privacy policy at
    all, because it at least acknowledges that there are possible issues, even
    though it dismisses them too quickly."

    Read Stefanie Olsen, "Search firm caves in to privacy pressure," CNet News,
    2 October 2002 at

    See also Stefanie Olsen, "Search firm takes heat for sharing data," CNet
    News, 20 September 2002 at

    [13] U.S. Court hears Internet provider warrants case

    When the government goes to an Internet service provider (ISP) to search a
    customer's email account, should a police officer be present?

    A United States Federal appeals court may soon provide an answer to this
    question. The case centers on a police-initiated search of a Yahoo email
    account, where the relevant law enforcement agents did not actually go to
    the provider's premises, but faxed a search warrant to the company from
    several thousands of kilometers away. Despite this absence of police, the
    Yahoo technicians performed the search on the government's behalf. At trial,
    the presiding judge held that, since the police failed to physically appear
    at Yahoo's offices at the time of the warrant was served, the search was

    The case has drawn the attention of many privacy experts. The Electronic
    Privacy Information Center (EPIC-a GILC member) filed a friend of the court
    brief, arguing that a police officer must "be physically present when a
    search warrant is served." The group based its arguments on numerous
    precedents indicating that that "[f]ormal procedures-including the
    requirement of an officer's presence at the service of a search warrant-have
    been in place since the 1700s to safeguard individuals from unwarranted
    intrusion upon their privacy by government officials, and to discourage
    governmental abuse of power by ensuring guarantees of trustworthiness and
    accountability." Moreover, EPIC charged that this procedural safeguard was
    "particularly important as emerging technological innovations pose new
    challenges to personal privacy. ... [T]he characteristics of the Internet do
    not negate the requirement of an officer's presence for the service of a

    EPIC's friend-of-the-court brief in this case is available (in PDF format)

    Background materials on the case is posted under

    Further information (including an audio recording of the oral arguments) is
    available via

    [14] Amazon.com privacy policy revisions criticized
    A leading online bookseller continues to receive negative reviews over the
    way it handles customer information.

    Nearly two years ago, Amazon.com added language to privacy policy saying
    that it would treat sensitive "customer information" as merely "business
    assets" that could be bought or sold as the company continued to develop its
    business, in contrast to prior statements that it would never buy or sell
    customer data. In addition, the company removed a past feature of its
    website, which allowed consumers to completely opt out of these types of
    information transfers (by sending e-mail to never@amazon.com). Instead, the
    company allowed users limited access to their files, apparently without
    allowing them to fully opt-out. In response, the Electronic Privacy
    Information Center (EPIC-a GILC member) and another privacy advocacy group,
    Junkbusters, filed a complaint with the United States Federal Trade
    Commission (FTC), arguing that Amazon's apparent weakening of its privacy
    policies constituted a deceptive trade practice. The FTC decided not to take
    action against the company, but numerous state regulators took up the

    In an agreement with those state regulators, Amazon recently announced
    additional changes to its privacy policies. For example, the company added
    new language saying that while it may transfer customer information as part
    of a sale or purchase of one of its "stores, subsidiaries or business
    units," such records will be "subject to the promises made in any
    pre-existing Privacy Notice." However, Amazon's latest privacy rule
    revisions have failed to assuage its critics. In a letter, EPIC and
    Junkbusters asked various consumer protection officials to take "further
    action" because "Amazon's policy and practices are still an ongoing threat
    to the privacy and intellectual freedom of millions of consumers in the
    United States." The authors of the letter called the new language regarding
    sale of businesses "plainly hypocrisy," especially since "Amazon promised
    never to sell customer information; now it is saying that it may do so,
    recently adding the 'clarification' that the buyer will be subject to the
    same promises that it originally made, and then abrogated."

    Meanwhile, new data indicates many U.S. consumers remain worried about their
    privacy online. A recent study suggests that only 22 percent of Americans
    think online purchasing data transactions are safe, while only 31 percent of
    consumers who do financial transactions via the Internet believe their
    personal information is secure.

    To read the aforementioned EPIC and Junkbusters letter, click

    Read Troy Wolverton, "Privacy groups target Amazon again," 8 October 2002 at

    See "Online Angst," CBS Marketwatch.com, 16 October 2002 at

    [15] Verichip tracking implant still in legal limbo

    The use of a controversial tracking device designed to be implanted under a
    person's skin remains on hold, pending the results of a United States
    government probe.

    Verichip can carry individualized data (such as a person's name, current
    condition, medical records and unique identification number) and is designed
    to be imbedded under a person's skin. When a special external scanner is
    pointed at a Verichip, "a number is displayed by the scanner" and the stored
    information is transmitted "via telephone or Internet." Verichip's maker,
    Applied Digital Systems (ADS), is marketing its product for such purposes as
    "identification, various law enforcement and defense uses and search and
    rescue." Company officials are now working to include Global Positioning
    System (GPS) technology to allow Verichip recipients to be tracked via the
    Information Superhighway.

    Besides arousing strong concern from privacy advocates, these developments
    have drawn the ire of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which
    started investigating ADS several months ago. Wally Pellerite from the FDA's
    Office of Compliance complained that the information ADS was "releasing in
    press releases and on television shows contradicted the information they
    gave" to his organization.  He also warned that Verichip "is a technological
    advance that we haven't really looked at before, and it may have inherent
    risks." A formal FDA decision may come by the end of the year.

    Read Julia Scheeres, "No Cyborg Nation Without FDA's OK," Wired News, 8
    October 2002 at

    [16] Belgium plans national digital signature ID card
    Plans by the government of Belgium to roll-out new complex ID cards are
    already generating serious criticism over their potential privacy

    Under the plan, every Belgian citizen would have to get an identification
    card with their names, photographs and 2 digital certificates. One
    certificate would be used for authentication, while the other would be used
    as a signature. The signature file would ostensibly be required when
    conducting transactions with banks or the government, including the payment
    of taxes. Children would receive special forms of the cards with most of the
    features contained in the adult version, except for the signature function.

    Many experts fear that the plan will have a strongly negative impact on
    human rights in cyberspace. Simon Davies of Privacy International (a GILC
    member) pointed out that it "is an ancient privacy principle that
    integration of data damages the integrity and rights of users. Your
    e-commerce identity should not be linked with day-to-day authentication.
    There are issues with data linkage as well as the possibility of massive
    technological failure."

    See "Belgium plans digital ID cards," BBC News Online, 4 October 2002 at

    [17] US cybersecurity report released
    A much-anticipated draft report from the United States government about
    security in cyberspace has finally been released.

    Among other things, the study suggests that "each user of cyberspace must
    play a role in protecting it," and that the U.S. government "alone cannot
    secure cyberspace. ... The Federal government should not intrude into homes
    and small businesses, into universities, or local agencies and departments
    to create secure computer networks." Instead, the report recommends such
    measures as "making it easier for home users and small businesses to keep
    current with anti-virus software, software patches and firewalls," as well
    as "encouraging and helping facilitate the installation and use of firewalls
    on all broadband Internet connections." Similarly, the report encourages
    "Internet service providers, antivirus software companies, and operating
    system/application software developers" to consider joint efforts to make it
    easier for the home user and small business to obtain security software and
    updates automatically and in a timely manner."

    The report (in PDF format) is posted under

    Public comments on this report may be submitted (no later than 18 November
    2002) to

    Read Carrie Kirby, "Cybersecurity plan unveiled/Panel's strategies on
    hacking, viruses had Silicon Valley input," San Francisco Chronicle, 19
    September 2002, page B3 at

    See Brian Krebs, "Cybersecurity Draft Plan Soft on Business, Observers Say,"
    WashingtonPost.com, 19 September 2002 at

    See also "Cyber Security Report Spreads Burden," CBS News Online, 18
    September 2002 at

    For coverage in German (Deutsch), read "Vorschlage fur eine US-Strategie zur
    besseren Cyber-Sicherheit," Heise Online, 19 September 2002 at

    [18] Bugbear computer worm still causing trouble
    A new computer malady has led to renewed concern over the security of
    personal computers.

    Known as Bugbear, the worm does not require users to open an attachment to
    infect a given computer, and disguises itself by choosing among several
    possible subject headers as well as sender addresses drawn from the victim's
    email address book. Once inside a machine, Bugbear apparently logs
    keystrokes typed on the infected computer (including passwords and credit
    card data) and sends the information to nearly a dozen recipients. The virus
    also creates a "backdoor" allowing outside attackers to gain control over
    the machine, while forcing the computer to initiate innumerable print jobs.

    Bugbear is just one of many computer pests that have exploited weaknesses in
    Microsoft's popular Outlook email program. The software giant's security
    failings have been savaged by privacy experts for years.

    See "Bugbear virus still rampant," BBC News Online, 8 October 2002 at

    Read Burhan Wazir, "Bugbear email steals card data," The Observer, 6 October
    2002 at

    For video and text coverage, see "Bugbear e-mail virus causing havoc," BBC
    News, 4 October 2002 at

    For coverage in German (Deutsch), read "Viren-Alarm: 'Bugbear' geistert
    immer noch herum," Spiegel Online, 7 October 2002 at

    [19] British Celldar trackers worry privacy experts
    British government plans to use cellular phone masts to track people and
    vehicles have causing trepidation among privacy advocates.

    Titled "Celldar", the system uses the reflections of electromagnetic waves
    given off by mobile phone transmitters. It was previously thought the
    intensity of these reflections was too low to allow precise imaging.
    However, researchers have reportedly developed receivers sensitive enough to
    detect these electromagnetic echoes so as to permit tracking of moving
    objects, including people; reflections from stationary objects (such as
    trees) would be treated as background "noise" and filtered out. Government
    agents are not only looking to put the Celldar into use as quickly as
    possible, but they are apparently looking to enhance its abilities so that
    the devices can detect activity behind walls and inside private homes.

    Although the efficacy of this system is still in doubt, its potential
    privacy implications and the government's energy in implementing Celldar
    have alarmed a number of experts. Simon Davies of Privacy International (a
    GILC member) labeled the entire scheme "an appalling idea. The Government is
    just capitalizing on current public fears over security to introduce new
    systems that are neither desirable nor necessary."

    Read Jason Burke and Peter Warren, "How mobile phones let spies see our
    every move, The Observer, 13 October 2002 at

    [20] Korean cell phone tracking bill poses privacy problems

    The Korean government plan may make it easier to track the geographic
    locations of mobile phone users.

    The Korean Ministry of Information and Communication (MIC) plans to
    introduce a bill that will require electronics manufacturers to install
    Global Positioning System(GPS)-enabled chips in all mobile phones. According
    to a spokesperson, the Ministry hopes to implement this plan by the
    third-quarter of 2003, and will not only allow precise pinpointing of users,
    but will provide "other special information." Several local companies,
    including SK Telecom and KTF, have already rolled out broadly similar
    systems using ground-based technology (as opposed to GPS, which is

    However, there are already fears over whether the location information from
    this scheme will be protected. While MIC has stated it will ban the sharing
    of personal data with third parties, the Ministry left a number of
    loopholes, most notably for law enforcement agents. Thus, the bill leaves
    open the possibility that the system will be used for wholesale police

    Read Kim Deok-hyun, "MIC to Draft Bill for Location-Based Service," Korea
    Times, 17 October 2002 at

    [21] New campaign coming against data retention proposals

    Stop1984 (a GILC member) will soon launch a new campaign to raise public
    awareness about proposals for telecom companies to retain data about their
    customers for law enforcement purposes. As part of this effort, the group is
    in the process of creating a special webpage to collect and coordinate
    anti-data retention materials provided by numerous non-governmental
    organizations. Stop1984 is also planning to produce post cards expressing
    opposition to such proposals, as well as provide background information on
    this subject in several languages (notably French, German, Spanish and

    For further information (including details on how to join this campaign),

    [22] Upcoming Central European Cyberliberties Conference

    The first Central European Cyber Liberties Conference (CECLC) will be held
    Vienna, Austria on 25 October 2002. The event will focus on the erosion of
    civil liberties online over the past year or so, including the rise in data
    retention proposals throughout Europe. The conference will include technical
    presentations as well as social events for civil rights advocates to meet
    with Internet activists from across the continent. In the evening the 2002
    Austrian Big Brother Awards ceremony will be held to spotlight the country's
    greatest threats to individual privacy. Attendance for all events is free of
    charge. CECLC is being organized by GILC members quintessenz and VIBE!AT,
    with support from the Open Society Institute.

    The official CECLC homepage is located at

    For more information on the Austrian Big Brother Awards, click


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    enhance online civil liberties and human rights.  Organizations are invited
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    To alert members about threats to cyber liberties, please contact members
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    To submit information about upcoming events, new activist tools and news
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    GILC Coordinator
    American Civil Liberties Union
    125 Broad Street, 17th Floor
    New York, New York 10004

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