Biometric

Show Details for the week of July 15th, 2013

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The Monitor this week takes an in depth look at personal data security and events in Egypt.

  • What We Don’t Know About Spying on Citizens: Scarier Than What We Know – An interview with Bruce Schneier
  • American Eyewitness in Egypt – An interview with Darryl John Kennedy

More about this week’s guests:

Bruce Schneier
Bruce Schneier is an internationally renowned security technologist, called a “security guru” by The Economist. He is the author of 12 books — including Liars and Outliers: Enabling the Trust Society Needs to Survive — as well as hundreds of articles, essays, and academic papers. His influential newsletter “Crypto-Gram” and his blog “Schneier on Security” are read by over 250,000 people. He has testified before Congress, is a frequent guest on television and radio, has served on several government committees, and is regularly quoted in the press. Schneier is a fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School, a program fellow at the New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute, a board member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an Advisory Board Member of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, and the Security Futurologist for BT — formerly British Telecom.

Recent Articles:

Has U.S. Started an Internet War?

Before Prosecuting, Investigate the Government

You Have No Control Over Security on the Feudal Internet

What We Don’t Know About Spying on Citizens: Scarier Than What We Know

The FBI’s New Wiretapping Plan Is Great News for Criminals

It’s Smart Politics to Exaggerate Terrorist Threats

Darryl John Kennedy

Darryl John Kennedy an American film composer and multiinstrumentalist, who performs in concerts and recordings throughout the world. He plays professionally 16 instruments, and has produced 125 CDs for artists in musical styles, ranging from classical to Hip-Hop. Darryl has traveled to over 50 countries as an independent cultural ambassador, demonstrating how Americans can be effective leaders in public diplomacy. Darryl recently spoke at the United Nations with the Institute for  Cultural Diplomacy about his successful experiences in Egypt. Before the revolution in Egypt, Darryl had been utilizing his approach in Cairo. He was the only American ever asked to compose the soundtrack for two Egyptian motion pictures. He also performed as guest artist in 16 concerts including one for 12,000 people. He produced five music CDs, was guest speaker at the American University of Cairo, and was the first American to co-star in an Arabic music video with an audience of 55 million. He did all of this without any record label promotion, Washington political or NGO support, and no local contacts when he first arrived in the country.

Websitehttp://www.darryljohnkennedy.com/

Show Details for the week of July 8th, 2013

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On this week’s show:
  • How the Security-Industrial Complex is tracking your data and what that means for you – an interview with Richard Stallman
  • The president should fire James Clapper and Keith Alexander over domestic spying revealed by Edward Snowden – an interview with Ray McGovern

More about this week’s guests:

Richard Stallman
Richard Stallman was induced into the Internet Hall of Fame. He is founder of the Free Software Foundation and has pioneered the notion of copyleft.
Quote: “It is said that ‘knowledge is power.’ Internet corporations took this maxim to heart, and set out to know as much as possible about each of us. Then the U.S. and other governments began massively collecting personal information from these companies, and in other ways too. That’s how they hope to have power over us. Digital technology turns out to mean building a giant digital dossier about each person. This might be OK if we had a government we could trust implicitly to respect human rights, one that would never try to stretch its power. What we have, under Bush and Obama, is a security-industrial complex that systematically crosses legal limits, egged on by corporations that will make more money through putting together more extensive dossiers, and saying they are doing this to ‘keep us safe’ from real but minor threats. It used to be that the threat to people’s freedom from computers was that they used programs that the users don’t control — nonfree programs, that is. The free software movement aims to provide free/libre replacements for nonfree programs. Free software is software that respects the users’ freedom and community. A program that isn’t free gives its owner unjust power over its users. Often it is designed to spy on them, restrict them, or even abuse them. (See ‘Proprietary Surveillance,’ DefectiveByDesign.org and ‘Proprietary Sabotage.’) With free software, the users can fix the program so it doesn’t spy, restrict, or mistreat. But the threats have multiplied. For years I’ve called portable phones ‘Stalin’s dream’ because of their surveillance capabilities. (Their movements are tracked, and they can be converted remotely into listening devices that transmit your conversations all the time, even when you try to shut them off.) For years I’ve warned that it is a mistake to entrust personal data to web sites, or even identify yourself to them. For years I’ve paid cash rather than use my credit card. The U.S. is slowly converting driver’s licenses into national ID cards. Without showing ID, you can’t fly, or ride Amtrak, or stay in a hotel in New York City, or open a bank account, or fill a prescription for pain killers. The immigration bill now being considered may make it impossible to get a job without national ID. Meanwhile, as license-plate cameras spread around our cities, the U.S. is slowly assembling a system that will track all movements of all cars, as is done in the UK. ‘Smart meters’ will build a dossier of how much electricity you use each hour or each minute, which says whether you are home. And the Internet of Things threatens to recruit all the products in your home as digital informers. Once data is collected, it will be misused. Formal limits on accessing the data will do nothing to stop the state from collecting all sorts of data about anyone it is determined to crush, such as torture whistleblower John Kiriakou. If no one dares tell us what the state is doing, the state will get out of control. We need to stop the accumulation of digital dossiers about people in general. Such collection should be permitted only under a court order applying to a specific person.”
Stallman sent his statement in an email with the following at the top:
        [To any NSA and FBI agents reading my email: please consider
        [ whether defending the US Constitution against all enemies,
        [ foreign or domestic, requires you to follow Snowden’s example.
Ray McGovern
Ray McGovern is a retired CIA officer turned political activist. McGovern was a Federal employee under seven U.S. presidents over 27 years, presenting the morning intelligence briefings at the White House for many of them. Ray McGovern leads the “Speaking Truth to Power” section of Tell the Word, an expression of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington.  He also teaches at its Servant Leadership School. In January 2003, Ray helped create Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) to expose the way intelligence was being falsified to “justify” war on Iraq. On the afternoon of the day (Feb. 5, 2003) Secretary of State Colin Powell misled the UN Security Council on Iraq, VIPS sent an urgent memorandum to President George W. Bush, in which we gave Powell a C minus for content. We ended the memo with this:“No one has a corner on the truth; nor do we harbor illusions that our analysis is irrefutable or undeniable [as Powell had claimed]. But after watching Secretary Powell today, we are convinced that you would be well served if you widened the discussion beyond … the circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.”Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, after a five-year study by his committee, described the intelligence used to “justify” war on Iraq as “unsubstantiated, contradicted, or even non-existent.”

As an act of conscience, on March 2, 2006 Ray returned the Intelligence Commendation Medallion given him at retirement for “especially meritorious service,” explaining, “I do not want to be associated, however remotely, with an agency engaged in torture.”  He returned it to Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R, Michigan), then-House Intelligence Committee Chairman.

Recent Op-Ed: Obama needs to take charge on NSA spying scandal

Visit Ray’s Website for more.

 

Show Details for the week of April 29th, 2013

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On this weeks show we continue our look at the so-called ‘War on Terror’ with a look at the call for expansion of biometric surveillance in the wake of the Boston Marathon attack:

  • The Risks of Expanding Biometric Cybersurveillance – an interview with Margaret Hu
  • Listener calls

More about this week’s guests:

Margaret Hu

Margaret Hu is an assistant professor at Duke Law School and author of the forthcoming article “Biometric ID Cybersurveillance” in the Indiana Law Journal. She said today: “Some members of Congress have argued that Comprehensive Immigration Reform should be delayed in light of the Boston bombing. Others will likely call for more surveillance measures through the proposed immigration reform legislation.  Quote:

 “More surveillance risks this problem: turning all U.S. citizens and all lawful immigrants into potential terrorist suspects. In fact, the bipartisan Senate comprehensive immigration reform proposal that was released last week already showed signs of multiple surveillance cancers, even before the bombing. The bill includes the significant expansion of various cybersurveillance and data surveillance (dataveillance) measures. For example, it significantly increases the use of drones for border security. It also increases biometric dataveillance and the likelihood that a universal biometric database would be needed to carry out new programs created by the bill. A universal digital photo database of all citizens and non-citizens, for example, could be used by the drone program (DHS and local law enforcement) for nearly invisible tracking. Specifically, Section 3102 gives $1 billion to the Social Security Administration to develop a ‘fraud-resistant, tamper-resistant, wear-resistant, and identity theft-resistant’ Social Security Card. Previous debates on immigration reform have explained that a ‘high-tech’ Social Security Card will resemble a credit card and will include biometric data (e.g., digital photo, maybe fingerprint and iris scans, and at least one member of Congress suggested DNA). Section 3103 states: ‘Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary [of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security] shall submit a report to Congress on the feasibility, advantages, and disadvantages of including, in addition to a photograph, other biometric information on each employment authorization document issued by the Department.’ In short, the bill incorporates multiple provisions that include a dramatic expansion of both biometric data collection protocols and biometric database screening protocols. To protect the foundational principles of a democratic society, we need less surveillance not more. Mass biometric data collection and suspicionless cybersurveillance measures that treat all Americans and immigrants like potential terrorist suspects won’t make us safer.”