Internet Advertiser Self-Regulation Lacking

  Internet advertisers’ attempts at self regulation as to privacy matters are not meeting the necessary standard says FTC Commissioner Jon Leibowitz. Advertisers predictably feel differently, stating that regulation of the industry would stifle the red-hot industry.   While these comments were only those of one commissioner, they demonstrate that privacy matters related to online advertising are Read More

Effects of Identity Theft on P2P

  In a first, the Justice Department has arrested a man for committing identity theft on a peer to peer (P2P) network. The accused, a Seattle man, used the P2P service to search for sensitive documents that were unwittingly shared by other users. While the victims were likely searching for movies or music to download the accused man was searching for tax returns and other sensitive information that would Read More

Protect America Act of 2007

  Congress recently passed an expansion of the Wiretap Act entitled “Protect America Act of 2007.” The act intends to provide government agencies greater freedom to survey certain types of communications. The government receives more freedom in creating surveillance programs and is less likely to be subject to court review for surveillance programs.   The key component of the new law is the definition Read More

33 Percent of Teens Victims of Cyberbullying

  A new survey on cyberbullying reports that about one third of teens have been victims of cyberbullying tactics such as receiving threatening messages, having private text messages or e-mails forwarded without consent or having rumors about them spread online.   The survey also found that girls are more likely than boys to be targets. In addition, teens who share their identities and thoughts Read More

EU and US Will Share Passenger Data

  The European Union and United States have announced a new effort to share passenger name records (PNRs) for purposes of providing more information about terrorist threats. The European Union will ensure that air carriers operating passenger flights in foreign air transportation to or from the United States of America will make available PNR data contained in their reservation systems as required by Read More

Google and Doubleclick Questioned in Europe

  BEUC, Europe's major consumer group, is following the lead of the U.S. based Electronic Privacy Information Center in questioning the privacy effects of a proposed merger/acquisition between Google and DoubleClick. Bottom Line: More pressure on privacy matters will do little to help the acquisition which is already playing defense on privacy matters within the United States. While unlikely to stop the Read More

CDA Immunity Further Weakened

More courts are recognizing that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (“CDA”) is a misguided and unworkable law and construing it accordingly. The 9th Circuit recently found in Fair Housing Council v. that when an ISP actively encourages or allows some damaging third party content, the ISP can face liability in spite of the CDA. Now the U.S. District Court for Connecticut has held that Read More

New Concerns About iTunes User Data

  Apple recently announced that it would be reducing the restrictive digital rights management (DRM) encoded in songs purchased via the iTunes service. However, Apple has not changed its practice of encoding each purchased track with personal data about the purchaser. The result is that each file purchased can identify the original purchaser of the track or album. This practice was less of an issue with the Read More

EU Questions Google on Privacy

  Further proof that Google can expect more serious oversight on its acquisitions and marketing practices, the European Union has launched an investigation into whether the Google search engine violates European privacy rules.   The primary concern is Google's practice of keeping information on user searches for up to two years after the performed search. The EU believes that this is too long a Read More

Ninth Circuit Finally Gets CDA Mostly Right

  The Communications Decency Act (CDA) has long been unjustly applied by courts all over the nation. Now, the Ninth Circuit may have finally construed the hot-button statute (almost) correctly in its opinion in Fair Housing Council v.   As the court notes:   The touchstone of section 230(c) is that providers of interactive computer services are immune from liability for Read More