============================================================== @@@@ @@@@ @@@ @@@@ @ @ @@@@ @@@@ @@@@@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @@@@ @@@ @ @ @@@@@ @ @@@ @@@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @@@@ @ @@@ @@@@ @ @ @@@@ @@@@ @ @ @ ============================================================== Volume 7.04 March 2, 2000 -------------------------------------------------------------- Published by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) Washington, D.C. http://www.epic.org ======================================================================= Table of Contents =======================================================================  DoubleClick Drops Plan to Utilize Personal Information  Current State of Internet Content Filtering  European Parliament Holds Hearing on Echelon  U.S. State Department Releases Human Rights Report  Possible Safe Harbor for Children's Privacy?  FTC Opens Telemarketing Service Rule for Public Comment  EPIC Bookstore -- Behind Closed Doors  Upcoming Conferences and Events =======================================================================  DoubleClick Drops Plan to Utilize Personal Information ======================================================================= The Internet's largest advertising network announced today that it had made a "mistake by planning to merge names with anonymous user activity across Web sites in the absence of government and industry privacy standards." DoubleClick CEO Kevin O'Connor added that "We commit today, that until there is agreement between government and industry on privacy standards, we will not link personally identifiable information to anonymous user activity across Web sites." Privacy organizations supported the move by DoubleClick, though several noted that it would be important to determine whether DoubleClick would continue to maintain the Internet Address Finder (www.iaf.net) and Get Away From It All Sweepstakes sites (www.netdeals.com). Both of these web sites are used by DoubleClick to tie people's names, mailing addresses, and email addresses to their DoubleClick cookies. Jason Catlett, CEO of Junkbusters Corp., commended DoubleClick for their announcement and said that it was important that DoubleClick recognized the need to develop appropriate legal and technical safeguards for online privacy. DoubleClick's announcement followed growing public protest, formal complaints before the Federal Trade Commission, and efforts by state attorney generals to bring legal actions. On February 10, EPIC had filed a complaint at the FTC alleging that the company had engaged in "unfair and deceptive" trade practices in their surreptitious collection of personal information and data indicating Internet users' behavior. EPIC had earlier raised questions about the privacy implications of the DoubleClick-Abacus merger at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing held in July 1999. For more information about the DoubleClick controversy: http://www.epic.org/doubletrouble/ and http://www.junkbusters.com/ EPIC's complaint against DoubleClick filed with the Federal Trade Commission: http://www.epic.org/privacy/internet/DCLK_complaint.pdf EPIC's testimony on Internet Privacy and DoubleClick before the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee : http://www.epic.org/privacy/internet/EPIC_testimony_799.pdf =======================================================================  Current State of Internet Content Filtering ======================================================================= Last week, voters in the conservative town of Holland, Michigan rejected a ballot proposal requiring public libraries to install filters on computers. The measure, which would have withheld funding for the library unless it blocked access to sites containing "obscene, sexually explicit or other material harmful to minors," was defeated 55 percent to 45 percent. Critics also noted that Holland shares the library with other townships whose residents were excluded from the vote. The American Family Association of Michigan sponsored the measure and contributed more than $35,000 to the campaign. Filtering proponents outspent free-speech advocates by a ratio of 14 to 1. The Utah Senate unanimously approved a measure on Monday to block funding from public libraries that fail to install filtering software to prevent children under the age of 18 from accessing "obscene" materials on the Web. The legislation awaits the signature of Gov. Mike Leavitt. The Smartfilter system is widely used in Utah to shield Internet users from pornography. A study conducted by the Censorware Project in 1998 showed that Smartfilter blocked access to documents useful for educational and research purposes, such as the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, as well as sites discussing safe sex and AIDS prevention. Peacefire released a report this week about sites banned by the filtering program I-Gear. The study found that 38 of the first 50 sites in the ".edu" domain blocked as "pornography" were errors. I-Gear also blocked web pages on sites for EPIC, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and American Civil Liberties Union as falling within the "Sex/Acts" category. I-Gear describes sites in the "Sex/Acts" category as "Sites depicting or implying sex acts, including pictures of masturbation not categorized under sexual education. Also includes sites selling sexual or adult products." One of the blocked EPIC webpages contains a transcript of the trial proceedings in the legal challenge to the Communications Decency Act, a federal law that attempted to ban certain categories of Internet content. The Censorware Project's findings on the Smartfilter system are available at: http://censorware.org/reports/utah/ For the full report and analysis of I-Gear and other types of filtering software, visit Peacefire: http://www.peacefire.org/ To learn about attempts to outlaw content on the Internet and filtering technology, peruse the Internet Free Expression Alliance website: http://www.ifea.net/ Also available through the EPIC Bookstore, "Filters and Freedom: Free Speech Perspectives on Internet Content Controls": http://www.epic.org/filters& =======================================================================  European Parliament Holds Hearing on Echelon ======================================================================= The European Parliament held hearings last week on the "Echelon Network," which has been described as a global spy network that is reputed to involve the governments of the U.S., U.K., Canada, and Australia. The purpose, according to some, is to intercept and gather electronic signals, such as faxes, phone calls and e-mails for commercial espionage. Duncan Campbell, a British journalist, presented his assessment of Echelon before the European Parliament on February 23. Campbell alleged that Echelon has been used to block deals between European firms and other countries and contributed to a decision by Saudi Arabia to drop a contract with Airbus. The Echelon matter has attracted interest at the highest levels of government. British Prime Minister Tony Blair denied that his government was engaged in corporate espionage. The French government has indicated that it will begin a formal investigation. The European Commission is also likely to pursue the Echelon matter. In the United States, a spokesperson for the Department of State said that it was not US policy to engage in corporate espionage. CIA Director George Tenet told Reuters "We do not spy on foreign companies for the economic gain of American companies. We don't do this. It's our policy, it's our regulation, we do not do this." The National Security Agency circulated a letter to members of Congress saying it was "not authorized to provide intelligence information to private firms for their economic advantage." The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is urging public hearings on Echelon. Congressman Bob Barr has asked the Government Reform Committee to hold public hearings on Echelon. European Parliament Hearing on "The European Union and Data Protection": http://www.europarl.eu.int/dg2/hearings/20000222/libe/en/default.htm National Security Agency Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): http://www.nsa.gov/about_nsa/faqs_internet.html Duncan Campbell's Echelon Study for the European Parliament, Scientific and Technological Options Assessment: http://www.europarl.eu.int/dg4/stoa/en/publi/default.htm ACLU's Echelon Watch page: http://www.echelonwatch.org Federation of American Scientists Project on Government Secrecy: http://www.fas.org/sgp/index.html =======================================================================  U.S. State Department Releases Human Rights Report ======================================================================= The Department of State has released the 1999 edition of its annual Country Reports on Human Rights. The report examines 194 nations' compliance with internationally recognized individual, civil, political, and worker rights, as stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Section 1, part (f) documents nations' respect for the integrity of the person, including freedom from arbitrary interference with privacy, family, home, or correspondence. Section 2, part (a) covers nations' respect for civil liberties, including freedom of speech and press. The report documents numerous cases in which national governments invade citizens' right to privacy. In Angola, for example, the government utilized an elaborate security system to facilitate the surveillance and wiretapping of opposition party leaders, journalists, and foreign officials. The Belarus Constitution claims to protect its citizens from invasion of privacy and interference with telephone or other communications. In practice, however, the government routinely monitors individuals' homes, telephones, and computers. The KGB reportedly enters residences without warrants, conducts illegal searches, and intercepts mail. Violations of free speech also persist throughout the world according to the State Department study. For example, the Turkish government banned or confiscated publications and police physically attacked journalists. In China, an estimated several thousand individuals who peacefully expressed their political, religious, or social views were detained by authorities. Leaders of political reform or human rights groups were frequently harassed and imprisoned. The Department of State's annual report on human rights is available at: http://www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/99hrp_index.html The Universal Declaration of Human Rights can be found at: http://www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/1999_hrp_report/ 99appendg.html =======================================================================  Possible Safe Harbor for Children's Privacy? ======================================================================= The Federal Trade Commission has posted a notice soliciting comments on a proposal from PrivacyBot.com to provide a Safe Harbor -- a self-regulatory alternative -- for the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). COPPA, passed in 1998 and set to go into effect in April, protects the collection and use of personal information from children up to the age of thirteen. The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act is the first and only piece of federal legislation to address Internet privacy. Under the safe harbor component of COPPA, an industry group or a seal program that offers an approved set of guidelines would be responsible for oversight and compliance of companies that claim to adhere to those principles. Comments on the PrivacyBot.com safe harbor proposal are due thirty days from when the notice appears on the Federal Register. The notice is currently available at: http://www.ftc.gov/os/2000/02/safeharborfr.htm To download a PDF copy of the FTC's final rules implementing the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: http://www.ftc.gov/os/1999/9910/childrensprivacy.pdf =======================================================================  FTC Opens Telemarketing Service Rule for Public Comment ======================================================================= On February 23, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) opened up a comment period on the Commission's Telemarketing Services Rule (TSR). The rule seeks to protect consumers from deceptive and abusive telemarketing practices. As dictated by the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act which directed the formation of the rules, the FTC is soliciting comments on the costs and benefits of TSR. The FTC is also taking advantage of the comment period to examine the telemarketing industry in general and its impact on consumers. Comments on TSR are due by April 27, 2000. On July 27-28, 2000, the FTC will also be holding a public forum to discuss TSR and related issues. For more information about filing comments or the upcoming forum: http://www.ftc.gov/os/2000/02/telesalesrule16cfr310.htm =======================================================================  EPIC Bookstore -- Behind Closed Doors ======================================================================= Behind Closed Doors: Privacy from Plymouth Rock to the Information Age by Robert Ellis Smith, Editor and Publisher of Privacy Journal http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN=0812930916/electronicprivacA Behind Closed Doors: Privacy from Plymouth Rock to the Information Age provides the complete story of privacy in the U.S. since its beginnings. This new 340-page book delves into the hidden niches of American history, from monitoring during the Colonial period and the devotion of the Founders to privacy, to the clamorous newspapers of the Nineteenth Century and the creation of a right to privacy in 1890; then the story of wiretapping and of credit bureaus and how Social Security numbers grew into national ID numbers, and finally the impact of all of this on our current use of the Internet. It's all here - a book you will not put down and one you will go back to often to arm yourself for the debates to come. In a special section, author Robert Ellis Smith offers practical advice for protecting yourself, advice similar to what Ben Franklin would have provided on Poor Richard's Web site. ================================ Additional titles on privacy, open government, free expression, computer security, and crypto, as well as films and DVDs can be ordered through the EPIC Bookstore: http://www.epic.org/bookstore/ =======================================================================  Upcoming Conferences and Events ======================================================================= Public Meeting, Child Online Protection Act Commission. U.S. Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and Information Administration. March 7, 2000. Department of Commerce. Washington, DC. For more information: http://www.ntia.doc.gov/ntiahome/congress/copafedreg.htm Privacy, Security & Confidentiality of Medical Records 2000: Complying With New HIPAA Regulations. NonProfit Management. One Day Seminars. Various Locations and Times. For more information: http://www.nonprofitmgt.com/privacy Chief Privacy Officer (CPO) Program 2000. Privacy & American Business. For more information: http://www.pandab.org/ Federal Trade Commission Advisory Committee on Online Privacy and Security. Series of Meetings. Federal Trade Commission Headquarters. Washington, DC. For more information: http://www.ftc.gov/acoas/ Protection, Property, and Privacy: A Symposium on Electronic Commerce. University of Virginia School of Law, Journal of Law and Technology. March 8-10, 2000. For more information: http://www.vjolt.net The New Wave of Privacy Protection in Canada. BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association and Riley Information Services. March 9-10, 2000. Hotel Vancouver. Vancouver, British Columbia. For more information: http://www.rileyis.com National Freedom of Information Day Conference -- Access & Technology: Recovering the Promise. The Freedom Forum in cooperation with the American Library Association. March 16, 2000. Rooftop Conference Center, The Freedom Forum. Arlington, VA. For more information: http://www.freedomforum.org/first/2000/2/event.asp Consumer Assembly 2000: 21st Century Public Policy Challenges. Consumer Federation of America. March 16-17, 2000. Washington Plaza Hotel. Washington, DC. For more information: http://www.consumerfed.org Is It Any of Your Business? Consumer Information, Privacy, and the Financial Services Industry. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. March 23, 2000. Seidman Center Auditorium. Arlington, VA. For more information: http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/press/2000/pr0014.html HIPAA Security and Privacy Requirements: A How To Blueprint for Compliance. MIS Training Institute. Two-day Seminars. Various Locations and Times. For more information: http://www.misti.com Access Act Reform: The Destruction of Records and Proposed Access Act Amendments. Riley Information Services. May 1, 2000. Westin Hotel. Ottawa, Canada. For more information: http://www.rileyis.com/seminars/ Call for Papers -- Freedom of Expression in the Information Age. Stanford Journal of International Law. Deadline April 15, 2000. For more information: http://www.stanford.edu/group/SJIL/ Entrust SecureSummit 2000. May 1-4, 2000. Hyatt Regency Dallas at Reunion. Dallas, TX. For more information: http://www.securesummit.com Shaping the Network: The Future of the Public Sphere in Cyberspace. Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility (CPSR). May 20-23, 2000. Seattle, WA. For more information: http://www.scn.org/cpsr/diac-00 Telecommunications: The Bridge to Globalization in the Information Society. Biennial Conference of the International Telecommunications Society. July 2-5, 2000. For more information: http://www.its2000.org.ar KnowRight 2000 - InfoEthics Europe. Austrian Computer Society and UNESCO. September 26-29, 2000. Vienna, Austria. For more information: http://www.ocg.at/KR-IE2000.html Privacy2000: Information and Security in the Digital Age. November 29, 2000. Adam's Mark Hotel. Columbus, Ohio. For more information: http://www.privacy2000.org ======================================================================= Subscription Information ======================================================================= The EPIC Alert is a free biweekly publication of the Electronic Privacy Information Center. A Web-based form is available for subscribing or unsubscribing at: http://www.epic.org/alert/subscribe.html To subscribe or unsubscribe using email, send email to email@example.com with the subject: "subscribe" (no quotes) or "unsubscribe". Back issues are available at: http://www.epic.org/alert/ ======================================================================= About EPIC ======================================================================= The Electronic Privacy Information Center is a public interest research center in Washington, DC. It was established in 1994 to focus public attention on emerging privacy issues such as the Clipper Chip, the Digital Telephony proposal, national ID cards, medical record privacy, and the collection and sale of personal information. EPIC is sponsored by the Fund for Constitutional Government, a non-profit organization established in 1974 to protect civil liberties and constitutional rights. EPIC publishes the EPIC Alert, pursues Freedom of Information Act litigation, and conducts policy research. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.epic.org or write EPIC, 666 Pennsylvania Ave., SE, Suite 301, Washington, DC 20003. +1 202 544 9240 (tel), +1 202 547 5482 (fax). If you'd like to support the work of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, contributions are welcome and fully tax-deductible. Checks should be made out to "The Fund for Constitutional Government" and sent to EPIC, 666 Pennsylvania Ave., SE, Suite 301, Washington, DC 20003. Your contributions will help support Freedom of Information Act and First Amendment litigation, strong and effective advocacy for the right of privacy and efforts to oppose government regulation of encryption and expanding wiretapping powers. Thank you for your support. ---------------------- END EPIC Alert 7.04 ----------------------- .
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