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Category Archives: Freedom of Information

EFF Provides Evidence to Courts on Telecoms Collection of Metadata

“This week EFF presented evidence in two of its NSA cases confirming the participation of Verizon Wireless, Sprint and AT&T in the NSA’s mass telephone records collection under the Patriot Act.  This is important because, despite broad public acknowledgement, the government is still claiming that it can dismiss our cases because it has never confirmedContinue Reading

Injunction against metadata collection reversed by U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C. Circuit

EFF – “The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s opinion [August 28, 2015] in Klayman v. Obama is highly disappointing and, worse, based on a mistaken concern about the underlying facts. The court said that since the plaintiffs’ phone service was provided by one subsidiary of Verizon—Verizon Wireless—rather than another—Verizon Business—they couldn’t prove that theyContinue Reading

CRS – National Security Letters in Foreign Intelligence Investigations

National Security Letters in Foreign Intelligence Investigations: A Glimpse at the Legal Background, Charles Doyle, Senior Specialist in American Public Law. July 31, 2015. “Five federal statutes authorize intelligence officials to request certain business record information in connection with national security investigations. The authority to issue these national security letters (NSLs) is comparable to theContinue Reading

Paper – Is Biblioleaks Inevitable?

Dunn AG, Coiera E, Mandl KD. Is Biblioleaks Inevitable? J Med Internet Res 2014;16(4):e112 “In 2014, the vast majority of published biomedical research is still hidden behind paywalls rather than open access. For more than a decade, similar restrictions over other digitally available content have engendered illegal activity. Music file sharing became rampant in theContinue Reading

US Database of the Deceased

As cybercrime has had a significant impact on tens of millions of our lives, whether we are: in the federal work force and all (yes all) of our personal (the definition of the word ‘personal’ needs to be modified soon) data was compromised (or more accurately, it was stolen, siphoned off, hacked…over days, weeks, months,Continue Reading

ViewPoint – Great New Possibilities for the Library of Congress

Colleagues – we have worked for many years, often many decades, as members of a profession to which we have a deep and abiding commitment and through which we have, under often the most challenging of circumstances, helped to usher in the future without forsaking the past. So this snippet (the rest is behind aContinue Reading

CIA Releases Declassified Documents Related to 9/11 Attacks

LANGLEY, VA — [June 12, 2015] “The CIA has released to the public declassified versions of five internal documents related to the Agency’s performance in the lead-up to the attacks of September 11, 2001. The documents can be found at CIA’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) online reading room at The first of theseContinue Reading

Americans’ Attitudes About Privacy, Security and Surveillance

Pew – Americans’ Views About Data Collection and Security By Mary Madden and Lee Rainie: “Contrary to assertions that people “don’t care” about privacy in the digital age, this survey suggests that Americans hold a range of strong views about the importance of control over their personal information and freedom from surveillance in daily life.Continue Reading

The Data Transparency Coalition

“The Data Transparency Coalition advocates on behalf of the private sector and the public interest for the publication of government information as standardized, machine-readable data. We believe governments should adopt non-proprietary data standards for the information they generate or collect, and publish such information as machine-readable data, especially with regard to their spending, regulatory, legislative,Continue Reading

Immigration Detention Risk Assessment

“Noferi, Mark L. and Koulish, Robert, The Immigration Detention Risk Assessment (July 1, 2015). 29 Georgetown Immigration Law Journal 45 (2015). Available for download at SSRN: “In early 2013, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) deployed nationwide a new automated risk assessment tool to help determine whether to detain or release noncitizens pending theirContinue Reading

Summary of Agency Chief FOIA Officer Reports for 2015

Summary of Agency Chief FOIA Officer Reports for 2015 and Assessment of Agency Progress in Implementing the President’s FOIA Memorandum and Attorney General Holder’s FOIA Guidelines With OIP Guidance for Further Improvement “The 2015 Chief FOIA Officer Reports address efforts in improving FOIA administrations in five key areas tied to Attorney General Holder’s 2009 FOIAContinue Reading

Digital help filing your FOIA request

Storybench: “A recent Gallup poll reaffirmed what we already know-the public’s trust in the media keeps sinking. So what’s a committed reporter to do? One answer is to take advantage of the Freedom of Information Act, or FOIA, to request public records to bolster one’s story. Agencies at the local, state and federal level produce thousands of records every day, mostContinue Reading