Berkman in the News
In response to that proposal, Jonathan Zittrain, a professor of internet law at Harvard University, wrote an open letter to Cameron, explaining why he thinks it’s a “very bad idea.”
It’s one thing to try and regulate WhastApp, says Zittrain, because the government knows where Facebook “lives,” and the Silicon Valley company has assets that could be seized.
But what happens when someone produces the next wildly popular messaging app? What if that someone happens to be, as Zittrain wrote in his letter, “two caffeine-fueled university sophomores?” They would be pretty hard to regulate, or even find, according to him.
Consumers “can know that there’s a cop on the beat when it comes to high-speed Internet access, the openness of the networks and the ability of content providers to at least complain if they’re being squeezed,” said Susan Crawford, a co-director of Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society and a proponent of tough rules.
“It’s not clear that lighting a match and dropping it in the public sphere is going to be a reliable way to bring closure,” said Jonathan Zittrain, a Harvard professor of Internet law who compared the practice to the old campus tactic of scrawling the names of alleged rapists on women’s bathroom walls.
“This is a huge deal,” said Bruce Schneier, a cryptographer who is chief technology officer at the security firm Resilient Systems, and a fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Center.
“The things that are the most egregious are when the NSA hacks everybody to get a few people,” Schneier told AFP.
“They’re getting encryption keys of everybody, including you and me. It’s a scorched earth policy.”
A report released last week by Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society concluded the “networked public space played a central, arguably decisive, role in turning around the Federal Communications Commission policy on net neutrality.”
It cited BattleFor-TheNet.com as one of the most influential forces.
Glenn Beck on Thursday interviewed security technologist Bruce Schneier about America’s ever-expanding domestic surveillance programs, and Schneier — who has written 12 books and testified before Congress — said he believes the government’s decision to collect information on every man, woman and child is a type of “insurance policy.”
“A bunch of organizations have looked at these metadata programs. The metadata, again, is data about data. It’s the social networks, the traffic analysis. It’s not the content, but who’s talking to who,” Schneier remarked. “Every time you look at this, it is not valuable. … It doesn’t stop terrorist attacks. So why is it being done? That’s an interesting question. It seems like it’s an insurance policy.”
The U.S. may not be on that list, but the malware is a threat to the entire Internet because “everything depends on everything else” in our interconnected digital world, according to a blog post by Bruce Schneier, a fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society.
“We need to figure out how to maintain security in the face of these sorts of attacks, because we’re all going to be subjected to the criminal versions of them in three to five years,” Schneier said.
Dear Prime Minister Cameron,
You recently proposed that all internet apps – and their users’ communications – be compelled to make themselves accessible to state authorities. I want to explain why this is a very bad idea even though it might seem like a no-brainer.
A recent report published by the Berkman Center for Internet & Society’s Internet Monitor project examines the emergence of religious skeptics in Arab cyberspace.
The report, “Arab Religious Skeptics Online: Anonymity, Autonomy, and Discourse in a Hostile Environment,” authored by Helmi Noman, a research affiliate of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, analyzes the content, discourse, and structure of three prominent Arab atheist web forums and examines the relationship between the networked information economy and religious skeptics.
On Monday, Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society announced that it was taking part in a collaborative effort to gather information about secret federal legal notices that demand corporate and user data from web service providers.
The Berkman Center worked alongside two digital rights groups, the Calyx Institute and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, as well as New York University’s Technology Law and Policy Clinic, to create CanaryWatch.org, a site designed to collect and monitor all of the Internet’s warrant canaries.