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Stewart Baker
Former government official now practicing law
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Episode 140 features long-time New York Times reporter, John Markoff, on the past and future of artificial intelligence and its ideological converse – the effort to make machines that augment rather than replace human beings. Our conversation covers everything from robots, autonomous weapons, and Siri to hippie poetry of the 1960s and Silicon Valley’s short memory on use of the term “cyber.” In the news, Maury Shenk reports that five EU members now say they want EU-wide crypto controls. And that’s not counting France and Germany. Maybe the real question is whether any EU countries oppose encryption regulation. We can’t find any. Tongue firmly in cheek, I thank Tim Cook for bringing the need for government crypto regulation to the attention of governments around the world. It turns out that the FBI actually hacked more than 8,000 computers in 120 countries in a single child porn investigation. Wow. And the Justice Department is lecturing me on the risk that active defense could cause unexpected foreign relations problems? Well, I guess they would know. We-Vibe’s undisclosed collection of data about users of its smart-phone enabled vibrators spurs a class action. Or should that be a “lacks class” action? I confess to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 28, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
In this week’s episode, we guess at the near-term future with Betsy Cooper and Steve Weber of UC Berkeley’s Center for Long Term Cybersecurity. In all of their scenarios, the future is awash in personal data; the only question is how it’s used. I argue that it will be used to make us fall in love – with our machines. In the news of the week, we explore the policy consequences of President-elect Trump’s personnel choices. I point out that the quickest route to the new administration’s short list seems to be an interview on the Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast. The internet advertising industry is trying to stamp out ad malware so that firms following a set of guidelines will earn a seal of approval Katie Cassel explains. Color me skeptical: would you buy an antivirus product that proclaimed that it scans “a reasonable percentage of” incoming code? It’s apparently guidelines week in cybersecurity-land, as agencies rush to release their work before the transition. Two agencies issued guidelines on security practices. The Department of Homeland Security released the recommendations for internet-connected devices that Rob Silvers forecast on the podcast last month. Alan Cohn summarizes the principles, which include steps like security... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
We couldn’t resist. This week’s topic is of course President-elect Trump and what his election could mean for All Things Cyber. It features noted cybercommentator Paul Rosenzweig and Daily Beast reporter Shane Harris. In the news, we’re reminded of the old Wall Street saying that bulls and bears can both make money in the market but pigs eventually get slaughtered. The same goes for the pigheaded, as the FTC has learned. Whatever modest satisfaction the FTC got from denying a stay of its order against LabMD surely evaporated when it forced the Eleventh Circuit to make an early call on the stay. The result: the court of appeals practically overrides the FTC decision on the motion. Or was the Commission just trying to make sure the proposed television series about LabMD had an ample supply of villains? If so, way to go, guys! Katie Cassel announces her imminent retirement from the podcast. She also explains the DMCA’s new exemption for security researchers. This is getting ugly: Yahoo now says that some of its employees knew about its massive data breach in 2014 – two years before it was disclosed. Why the delay? Yahoo says it’s investigating – and that it... Continue reading
Posted Nov 14, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
The episode features a vigorous and friendly debate between me and Frank Cilluffo over his new report on active defense, titled “Into the Gray Zone.” It’s a long and detailed analysis by the Center for Homeland and Cyber Security at GW University. My fear: the report creates gray zones for computer defense that should be seen as purely lawful — and turns far too many genuine gray zones black. Maury Shenk returns after missing last week due to the British determination not to follow US daylight savings practice. After my rant in favor of Sunday Daylight Hoarding Time, he updates us on challenges to the Privacy Shield Agreement in EU courts by privacy true believers (two and counting) and EU court challenges to government data practices in China, Russia, Algeria, and Saudi Arabia (none in evidence). Speaking of which, China has actually adopted the cybersecurity law it’s been threatening Western tech companies with for months, if not years. Congress is starting to notice the FDA’s hapless response to medical device security. I predict that the FDA will not take serious notice until heart implants start tweeting: “I’d give this guy cardiac arrest, but I’m too busy DDOSing the DNC.” Michael... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Jonathan Zittrain, who holds a surfeit of titles at Harvard, is our guest for episode 136. Among other topics, we explore the implications of routine doxing of political adversaries. Along the way I extract kind words from Jonathan for Sarah Palin and welcome him to the club of those who think mass doxxers are evil punks. It’s a wide-ranging, informative, and unideological performance of the sort we’ve come to expect from Jonathan. In the news, I note that the FBI seems to be getting reinforcements in the Great Crypto War, as European prosecutors prepare the battlefield with complaints about Islamic State use of Western encryption. We’re seeing the rise of a new kind of security disclosure mandate, Katie Cassel tells us. First DOD and now Treasury are requiring their industry to disclose not just personal data breaches but the details of security breaches. But only Treasury was clever enough to do it without new regulatory authority. NHTSA proposes some pretty thin cybersecurity guidance for vehicles, says Michael Vatis, and a couple of Senate Dems predictably call for tougher mandatory standards. In more dog-bites-man news, European data protectionists have more hassles for US tech companies; this time it’s WhatsApp and Yahoo... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Our guest for the episode is Rob Silvers, the assistant secretary for cybersecurity policy at DHS. He talks about what the government can and should do about newly potent DDOS attacks and the related problem of the Internet of Things. The only good news: insecure debrillators and pacemakers may kill you, but they haven’t yet been implicated in any DDOS attacks. In the news, Michael Vatis and I debate whether the netizen reaction to a search warrant that also allows the FBI to collect phone security fingerprints during the search is overheated or justified. Maury Shenk explains an unusual UK tribunal ruling, holding that GCHQ’s and MI5’s bulk collection of data was once a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights. Luckily for the UK government, that illegality was cured by the government’s acknowledgment of the collection. The financial industry faces new cybersecurity regulations; Katie Cassel explains. Then, as the junior member of the podcast crew, Katie also finds herself called on to explain when defense contractors have to disclose cyberattacks to the Department. In other news, NSA contractor Harold Martin is looking less like a hoarder and more like a serious threat to national security, thanks to the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 24, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Episode 134 features John Carlin’s swan song as assistant attorney general for national security. We review the highs and lows of his tenure from a cybersecurity point of view and then look to the future, including how the US should respond to Russia’s increasingly uninhibited use of cyberpower. I introduce John to Baker’s Law of Post-Government Policy Advice: “The good news about leaving government is that you can say what you want. The bad news is that you can say what you want because nobody cares.” In the news roundup, we explore the Geofeedia flap, in which large Silicon Valley companies are claiming the right to deny law enforcement access to public postings, even when that access is limited to particular geographic areas, such as the location of an ongoing riot. Remarkably, they seem to think we ought to be praising them for this antisocial stand. Michael Vatis and I consider whether law enforcement can subpoena the same data from antisocial media. Michael and I also mull over the troubling news that Carbanak is targeting SWIFT endpoints. The G7 has financial cybersecurity guidelines, but it seems unlikely that they’ll turn the tide of an increasingly at-risk banking system. Michael and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
In episode 133, our guest is The Grugq, famous in hacker circles but less so among Washington policymakers. We talk about the arrest of an NSA employee for taking malware and other classified materials home, the Shadow Broker leak of Equation Group tools, and the Grugq’s view that the United States has fundamentally misunderstood the nature of cyberconflict. In the news, Alan Cohn and I discuss the DHS/DNI fingering of Russia – and Putin – for the DNC hack. We ask whether this means that sanctions will follow, and I characterize the administration’s stance so far as an updating of Groucho Marx’s position: “These are my red lines. If you cross them, well, I have others.” I award “stupidest privacy scandal of the year” to the complaints that Yahoo! (gasp!) scanned email content in a search for a terror-related signature. Continuing what will become a rant-filled episode, I nominate the Third Circuit for membership in a Hall of Judicial Shame. The court of appeals has joined the European Court of Justice in giving legal effect to the early Guardian articles claiming that PRISM allowed NSA to scan all emails in US webmail services. That might have been a mistake in... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
In episode 132, our threepeat guest is Ellen Nakashima, star cyber reporter for the Washington Post. Markham Erickson and I talk to her about Vladimir Putin’s endless appetite for identifying ‒ and crossing ‒ American red lines, the costs and benefits of separating NSA from Cyber Command, and the chances of a pardon for Edward Snowden. Ellen also referees a sharp debate between me and Markham over the wisdom of changing Rule 41 to permit judges to approve search warrants for computers outside their district. In the news roundup, Meredith Rathbone explains the remarkably aggressive, not to say foolish, European proposal to impose export controls on products that would enable state surveillance in cyberspace. Apparently locked in a contest with Brussels over who can propose the dumbest regulation of cyberspace, California has adopted a law that purports to prohibit entertainment sites like IMDb from publishing the true ages of actors and actresses. Markham and I debate the constitutionality of the measure. In other California news, Markham brings us up to date on the surveillance lawsuit against Google. He also explains the deep Washington maneuvering over FCC Chairman Wheeler’s plan for cable set top boxes. I call for a rule that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Our interview in episode 131 is with Matt Cutts and Lisa Wiswell from the Pentagon’s Defense Digital Service. Matt joined the Digital Service from Google where he authored their SafeSearch content filter. Lisa is a bureaucracy hacker with the Defense Digital Service and previously spent years working on cyber-warfare in DOD’s policy shop and in DARPA. They both stress that the Service is looking for good code and policy hackers -- and that their Digital Service recruiting link is https://www.usds.gov/join After a musical intro featuring the Beatles as reimagined by artificial intelligence, Michael Vatis explains why Microsoft's new German datacenters may succeed in putting customer data beyond the reach of US agencies, and why Microsoft might not want to state its goal quite that way. Jennifer Quinn-Barabanov explains how a new lawsuit on behalf of Gilbert Chagoury will test whether the US government will punish leakers and whether the EU succeeds in its effort to get the Privacy Act to cover European nationals. Jen and I also tackle the record-breaking Yahoo! breach, and what it says about the actual impact of data breach risk on companies and investors. Jen reveals this shocking statistic: the median cost of a breach is... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
In a law-heavy news roundup, Katie Cassel and I talk about New York’s dangerously prescriptive cybersecurity regs for banks and insurers. Maury Shenk and I uncover the seamy industrial politics behind the EU’s latest copyright and telecom proposals. The Sixth Circuit deepens a circuit split over standing and how much injury it takes to support a federal data breach lawsuit – and then, oddly, decides not to publish its opinion. Michael Vatis explains. In other news, Michael notes that the CFTC has adopted its own very prescriptive cybersecurity testing rules. At least pen testers should be happy; their specialty is increasingly required by regulators. Katie hoses me down on the significance of the Ninth Circuit’s latest “failure to warn” decision for section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Good news for section 230, not so much for Match.com. Finally, the FTC continues to vie for the title of federal agency with the least sense of moderation. The FTC is opposing a motion to stay in the LabMD case. Pending appeal, it wants to impose strict cybersecurity procedures on a business whose servers are probably stored in Mike Daugherty’s garage. As Winston Churchill said about nuclear weapons, at some point all... Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
In episode 129, Alan Cohn and I dive deep on the Government Oversight committee’s predictably depressing and unpredictably entertaining report on the OPM hack. Highlights: Cheeky Chinese hackers registering their control sites to superhero alter egos like Tony Stark. And poor, patriotic Cytech finds an intruder during a sales demo, rushes to provide support without a contract, and ends up not just stiffed but accused of contributing to a violation of the Antideficiency Act. The overmatched OPM security team launches a desperate operation Big Bang to oust one team of hackers, while another is safely ensconced in the network, biding its time before exfiltrating all of OPM's data. And for those who’ve complained that we never talk about cybertax law, a feast: Steptoe’s premier international tax partner (and head of the firm), Phil West, explains everything you need to know about the fight between Apple and the EU over Ireland’s tax regime for the company. I profess to be shocked to discover that Brussels is doing, well, what Brussels usually does -- screw US companies for the crime of being American and better at tech than the EU. Alan and I talk about one more PlayPen decision, United States v.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
The podcast is back with a bang from hiatus. Our guest, Scott DePasquale, is the CEO of Utilidata, an electric utility IoT and cybersecurity company. Scott talks about his contribution to the Internet Security Alliance’s upcoming book, The Cyber Security Social Contract. Episode 128 also brings you a news roundup from the most momentous August in cybersecurity history. Maury Shenk brings the SWIFT hack to life by describing his own brush with cyber bank fraud. I cover the Shadow Brokers’ disclosure of what most believe to be an NSA hacking toolkit. Meanwhile, Russia is hacking our political process and only the side whose ox is being gored seems to care. The EU, with its unerring instinct for the capillaries, continues to fight the US on these issues. Privacy Shield is up, and a lot of serious companies are signing up, despite the uncertainties. Maury and I note the entry of France and Germany into the Great Crypto World War – at a comfortably leisurely pace. And, in a welcome move, the European Court of Justice has reaffirmed that there are still some (modest and blurry) limits to the assertion of data protection jurisdiction over internet merchants. The FTC had a... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
I know we promised to take August off, but I was inspired by the flap over the DNC hack and the fact that I’m at the Aspen Homeland Security Working Group meeting in Colorado. I waylaid two former intelligence community members on the Aspen campus and asked for their views on the DNC hack. Well, to be accurate, I start the interview by asking whether Putin really has the balls to step into the US electoral campaign in this way. Answering the question are two men with long years dealing with Soviet and then Russian intelligence: Charles Allen, who became intelligence chief for DHS after a full career at CIA, and John McLaughlin, who ended his career at CIA as the Deputy Director and Acting Director. As always, the Cyberlaw Podcast welcomes feedback. Send email to CyberlawPodcast@steptoe.com or leave a message at +1 202 862 5785. Download the 127th episode (mp3). Subscribe to the Cyberlaw Podcast here. We are also now on iTunes, Pocket Casts, and Google Play! Continue reading
Posted Jul 28, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
If Vladimir Putin can do it, so can we. This week the podcast dives deep into the US presidential campaign. I of course talk with Maury Shenk about evidence that the Russians are behind “Guccifer 2.0” and the DNC data leak – aided by a Wikileaks that looks more and more like an FSB front. I compare the largely indistinguishable Dem and GOP platform planks on encryption ‒ and draw a lesson from the straddles: there’s little doubt that every lobbyist who contributed to the platforms was working for Silicon Valley, so the failure to endorse the Valley’s view may spell trouble for techie triumphalism. I also spike the football for the Justice Department, whose policy views on the dangers of hacking back were swamped when the GOP called for letting victims of hacking have their way with the hackers. Our interview this week touches on the insider threat. Andy Irwin describes the new DOD rule requiring contractors to devise insider monitoring plans for cleared personnel, and two industry leaders, Ed Hammersla, CSO of Forcepoint, and Brian White, COO of RedOwl Analytics, talk about what technology can do to spot incipient employee defections and data theft. A discussion of the... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Inspired by this week's podcast episode and a conversation with Brock Meeks, an old friend and sparring partner, I contributed the following op-ed to Atlantic Media's BRINK site. Many thanks to Victoria Muth for her assistance in turning my good intentions into an actual article. Corporate executives are fed up with the current approach to network security. They’ve been spending more and more on security. Despite that spending, they’re told that they can’t expect to keep intruders out of their networks; the best they can hope for is to lock the intruders out of their most important files, or to keep hackers from exfiltrating all that data. Government help seems useless. It rarely catches intruders or offers security advice beyond the obvious; however, it’s quite happy to punish corporate hacking victims after the fact, often imposing fines and liability on the victim for failing to implement a security measure that three-quarters of government agencies haven’t implemented. It’s pretty clear that building higher walls around our networks is a dead end. So is tighter scrutiny and control over what happens on the network. These things have their place, just as locks on our doors and windows have a place in physical... Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
What’s the one argument in favor of hacking back best calculated to infuriate the State Department? It's been found by the father and son, authors of a thoughtful paper on the topic for the Hoover Institution. I interview them in episode 125 of the podcast. Jeremy, a law professor at the Scalia Law School, and his son, Ariel Rabkin, a computer scientist out of Berkeley, have the expertise to deal gracefully and concisely with the policy debate over hacking back. Their proposal charts a middle ground while cheerfully mocking State’s hand-wringing about the international consequences of permitting hacking victims to act outside their networks. Bonus feature: lifetime career advice from yours truly! In the news roundup, Michael Vatis covers Microsoft’s surprising Second Circuit victory over the Justice Department in litigation over a warrant for data stored in Ireland. The hidden issue in that case was data localization – the same issue driving the Justice Department’s new legislative proposal to allow foreign nations to obtain information from US data repositories. That proposal is unpacked by special guest David Kris, former Assistant Attorney General for National Security and author of the treatise, National Security Investigations and Prosecutions. In other news, LabMD has... Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Edward Snowden criticizes Russia’s mass surveillance law, and a Russian official retaliates by outing him ‒ as a Russian intelligence source. Silent Circle, the phone company that built its marketing on fear and loathing of the NSA, is nearing bankruptcy. Members of the dominant European Parliament faction are asking the Commission, “Hey! How come you keep demanding more data export and privacy concessions from the US without asking for bupkis from China?” And the FBI now has three politically viable paths to win back authority to obtain electronic communications transaction records with a National Security Letter. Truly, episode 123 feels like a reward for living through 2013. In other news, Alan Cohn and Katie Cassel report on the Bank for International Settlements’ surprisingly sophisticated cybersecurity standards. I whinge about Bob Litt’s 18 pages of binding commitments to Europe on how the US will conduct intelligence from now on. Alan and I compliment CBP on its technical savvy in easing border clearance ‒ and ponder the role of stools in protecting the homeland. I report that Belgian courts have reversed a verdict by the local DPA against Facebook, and Maury Shenk comments on broader implications for EU data protection. Katie notes... Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Was Iran’s cyberattack bricking vast numbers of Saudi Aramco computers justified by a similar attack on the National Iranian Oil Company a few months’ earlier? Does NSA have the ability to “replay” and attribute North Korean attacks on companies like Sony? And how do the last six NSA directors stack up against each other? Those and other questions are answered by our guest for episode 122, Fred Kaplan, author of Dark Territory: The Secret History of Cyber War. In the news roundup, we explore British corollary of the Pottery Barn Rule: “You Brexit, you owns it.” As the UK and the EU struggle to deal with fallout from the historic UK vote, all the incentives seem to be in place for the EU to do what it does best: vindicate the worst instincts of the European elite. In the name of deterring other departures, the EU is unlikely to offer the UK much in the way of concessions. On data protection, for example, Maury Shenk points out that the UK will likely have to keep its current law -- and adapt to the new regulation -- just to avoid a claim that British privacy law is inadequate. In other news,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 28, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
European hypocrisy on data protection is a lot like the weather. Everyone complains about it but no one does anything about it. Until today. In episode 120, we announce the launch of the Europocrisy Prize. With the support of TechFreedom, we’re seeking tax deductible donations for a prize designed encourage the proliferation of Schrems-style litigation, but with a twist. We’ll award the prize to anyone who brings complaints that force Europe to apply the same human rights and data export standards to Russia, China, and Saudia Arabia as it applies to the US. More on the prize here. We’re inspired to this announcement because, as Katie Cassel tells us in the news roundup, the data protection commissioner in Hamburg is hot-dogging on the privacy issue, and with relish. He has imposed fines on US companies for the offense of being caught by surprise when the Safe Harbor went down. Naturally, as far as we can tell, no similar cases have been launched against Russia, China, or any of the other countries that never even bothered to negotiate over privacy with the EU. The Europocrisy Prize, though, should go a long way to even the score. We’re joined for the news... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Our guest for episode 119 is Kevin Kelly, founding executive editor of Wired Magazine and author of The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces that will Shape our Future. Kevin and I share many views – from skepticism about the recording industry’s effort to control digital data to a similar skepticism about EFF’s effort to control personally identifiable data – but he is California sunny and I am East Coast dark about where emerging technology trends are taking us. The conversation ranges from Orwell and the Wayback Machine to the disconcerting fluidity and eternal noobie-ness of today’s technological experience. In closing Kevin sketches a quick but valuable glimpse of where technology could take us if it comes from Shenzhen rather than Mountain View, as it likely will. The news roundup leavens deep thoughts about the future with loose talk about sex and politics. I ask whether the FOIA classification review of Hillary Clinton’s email is compounding the damage done by her use of a homebrew server. I discover the weird connection between leak defenders like Julian Assange and Jacob Appelbaum and sexual extortion – and even offer a theory to explain it (caution: involves threesomes). We award the Dumbest Journalism... Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Episode 118 digs deep into DARPA’s cybersecurity research program with our guest, Angelos Keromytis, associate professor at Columbia and Program Manager for the Information Innovation Office at DARPA. Angelos paints a rich picture of a future in which we automate attribution across networks and international boundaries and then fuse bits of attribution data as though they were globules of the Terminator reassembling into human form. In the news roundup, a district court judge takes NIT-picking to an extreme, quietly deep-sixing child porn evidence because the FBI would not disclose its Network Investigative Technique. Michael Vatis and I wonder why such an important call would not be dignified by a written opinion. Michael and I also trade assessments of Twitter’s latest effort to revive its faltering lawsuit to reveal how many national security discovery orders it has received. Michael is more bullish than I am on Twitter’s prospects. The EU has officially given up on competing with the rest of the world on internet technology, and it has gone back to its roots – using regulation to at least force successful companies to pay a toll of hassle and forelock-tugging in Brussels. Maury Shenk has the facts (if not quite the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Ransomware is the new black. In fact, it’s the new China. So says our guest for episode 116, Dmitri Alperovitch, the CTO and co-founder of CrowdStrike. Dmitri explains why ransomware is so attractive financially – and therefore likely to get much worse very fast. He and I also explore the implications and attribution of the big bank hacks in Vietnam and Bangladesh. In the news roundup, Michael Vatis reports on the new federal trade secrets law. In addition, inspired by the Edelson firm’s sealed complaint against a Chicago-based law firm for cybersecurity failings, Steptoe’s chair emeritus, Roger Warin, charts the legal and strategic terrain of suing law firms for bad security. The hazards of class action litigation in this field are illuminated by the district court’s recent ruling on the Zappos breach, which Michael unpacks for us. Unable as always to resist a sitting duck, I quote the FTC’s condescending Congressional testimony promising to give the FCC the benefit of its 40 years of security expertise. It plans to offer comments on the FCC’s proposed privacy regulations. But the FTC fails to note that in all those 40 years, it has never had occasion to ask anyone for comment on... Continue reading
Posted May 17, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Does the FISA court perform a recognizably judicial function when it reviews 702 minimization procedures for compliance with the fourth amendment? Our guest for episode 115 is Orin Kerr, GWU professor and all-round computer crime guru, and Orin and I spend a good part of the interview puzzling over Congress’s mandate that the FISA court review what amounts to a regulation for compliance with an amendment that is usually invoked only in individual cases. Maybe, I suggest, the recent court ruling on 702 minimization and the fourth amendment doesn’t make sense from an article III point of view because the FISA judges long ago got bored with reading intercept applications and adhering to article III's pesky case and controversy requirement; it's just more fund to act as special masters overseeing the intelligence community. We also explore an upcoming Orin Kerr law review piece on how judicial construction of the fourth amendment should be influenced by statutes that play in the same sandbox. In the news roundup, Maury Shenk provides an overview of the data protection logjam now building up in Brussels, including EU Parliament approval of the new US-EU law enforcement agreement. In FTC news, Katilin Cassel explains why Amazon... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2016 at Skating on Stilts
Our guest for episode 114 is General Michael Hayden, former director of the NSA and CIA; he also confirms that he personally wrote every word of his fine book, Playing to the Edge: American Intelligence in the Age of Terror. In a sweeping interview, we cover everything from Jim Comey’s performance at the AG’s hospital bedside (and in the Clinton email investigation) to whether the missed San Diego 9/11 calls were discovered before or after the 215 program was put in place. Along the way, we settle the future of Cyber Command, advise the next President on intelligence, and lay out the price the intelligence community is paying for becoming so darned good at hunting terrorists. Michael Vatis and I do the news roundup. It’s bad news this week for the same child porn defendants who got good news last week, when a court overturned the search warrant used to search their computers after they visited an FBI-run Tor node. Now, though, the Supreme Court has approved a change to Rule 41 authorizing geographically unbound search warrants in computer cases. Unless Congress comes to their rescue by rejecting the proposed rule change, an unlikely prospect indeed, the new rule will... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2016 at Skating on Stilts