The enhanced encryption measures announced by Zoom this week will only protect paying customers of the videoconferencing platform, according to the company’s CEO. Although Zoom said it will allow paying users to fully encrypt their video communications—a response to the security and privacy flaws that EPIC and others have identified—the platform will still be able to access the real-time communications of non-paying users. “Free users for sure we don't want to give [end-to-end-encryption] because we also want to work together with FBI, with local law enforcement in case some people use Zoom for a bad purpose,” Yuan said. Last year, EPIC sent a detailed complaint to the FTC citing numerous privacy and security flaws with Zoom and warning that the company had "exposed users to the risk of remote surveillance, unwanted video calls, and denial-of-service attack." In April, EPIC urged the FTC to open an investigation. Zoom’s announcement follows a recent settlement with the New York Attorney General over the company’s consumer safeguards.
Privacy and the Pandemic
EPIC is working to ensure that private and public sector responses to COVID-19 safeguard the privacy and civil liberties of all people. Through advocacy, oversight, and litigation, EPIC is ensuring that the coronavirus pandemic does not lead to erosion of individual rights. Visit epic.org/covid to see EPIC's resources on these issues.
Kasparov, Experts, NGOs Urge OECD to Back Democratic Values
More than 70 NGOs and Experts, including former world chess champion Garry Kasparov, have asked the OECD Secretary General to reaffirm support for democratic values as the international organization develops policies for national governments that are battling the pandemic.
Court Rules for EPIC in Mueller Case.
A federal judge has agreed to conduct an independent assessment in EPIC's case for the release of the complete Mueller Report. Judge Walton called the Attorney General's conduct in the case EPIC v. DOJ "distorted" and "misleading." EPIC has published a book about the case EPIC v. Department of Justice: The Mueller Report", available for sale at the EPIC Bookstore.
Defend Privacy. Support EPIC.
EPIC is on the front lines of the major privacy and civil liberties debates. In 2019, EPIC has worked to protect democratic institutions, promote algorithmic transparency, and defend the right to privacy. We need your support. And EPIC is a top-rated non-profit - Charity Navigator (Four Star) and Guidestar (Gold). Please donate to EPIC today.
EPIC is on the front lines of the major privacy and civil liberties debates. In 2020, EPIC has important work to do on artificial intelligence, face surveillance, data protection, and election security, among many other issues. Please donate to EPIC today to help us continue this important work.
EPIC Launches Campaign For a Data Protection Agency
EPIC Advisory Board Member Professor Ari Waldman and EPIC Policy Director Caitriona Fitzgerald with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand for introduction of Data Protection Act to establish a data protection agency in the United States.
EPIC Files Complaint with FTC about Employment Screening Firm HireVue
EPIC's Jeramie Scott: Ban Face Surveillance
EPIC Senior Counsel Jeramie Scott on CBS News discussing the dangers of face surveillance.
EPIC Launches Campaign to Ban Face Surveillance
EPIC has launched a campaign to ban face surveillance. EPIC will publish information on face surveillance laws, reports, and protests worldwide.
The tragic deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor remind us that the needle has not moved on systemic issues of racism and police brutality in the United States. Across the country, protestors are demanding justice and challenging us to do our part to ensure this type of violence never happens again. EPIC understands that this problem is multi-layered. Black, brown, and indigenous communities are targets of more surveillance and policing than any other. This must end.
The consistent and disproportionate mistreatment of black people by police and other government entities further solidifies our commitment to government accountability, transparency, and the protection of civil liberties. We will continue to enforce open government obligations, expose illegal and intrusive behaviors by government bodies, and advocate for legislation that protects marginalized communities.
EPIC stands in solidarity with protestors, community groups, and advocates that fight against systemic oppression. We will not remain silent in the face of social injustice. EPIC will amplify the black voices working in our space, financially support programming aimed at supporting the black community, and be an ally to organizations fighting for racial justice. EPIC is not only looking outward in our efforts to protect the privacy and civil liberties of the black community, but we are also committed to upholding an inclusive workplace by eradicating the conscious and unconscious biases we hold.
Black Lives Matter.
A federal court, ruling in EPIC v. AI Commission, has ordered the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence to open its meetings to the public. The Commission is charged with developing recommendations on the use of AI in national security and defense contexts. But after the Commission conducted much of its work in secret and without public input, EPIC filed an open government lawsuit against the Commission last year. In Monday’s decision, Judge Trevor N. McFadden ruled that the Commission is subject to the Federal Advisory Committee Act and must therefore hold open meetings and regularly publish its records. “Today, the Court holds that Congress can and did impose Janus-like transparency obligations upon the AI Commission,” Judge McFadden wrote. “No rule of law forced Congress to choose just one.” EPIC previously won a court ruling that the AI Commission is subject to the Freedom of Information Act, and the Commission recently began disclosing its past records. The case is EPIC v. AI Commission, No. 19-2906.
EPIC Obtains Records about Utah’s Contact Tracing App; State Hasn’t Conducted Privacy Audit of App »
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EPIC in the News
Sen. Cassidy joins bi-partisan legislation to protect personal privacy, promote public health through COVID-19 apps
The Livingston Parish News
June 3, 2020
EPIC v. DOJ: Seeking the final report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller concerning Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Department of Commerce v. New York: Whether the Department of Commerce and Census Bureau violated the Administrative Procedure Act when it added a citizenship question to the 2020 Census.
EPIC provides expertise to shape strong privacy and open government laws at both the state and federal level.
EPIC recently launched a campaign to promote the creation of a Data Protection Agency in the U.S.
EPIC's Alan Butler on Location Privacy
Privacy Law Sourcebook 2020