Cindy Cohn

Cindy Cohn is legal director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), as well as its general counsel, coordinating over 40 national class action lawsuits against the telecommunications carriers and the government seeking to stop warrantless NSA surveillance

Articles by this author

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Friday, August 26, 2016 - 11:00am
Word Games: What the NSA Means by “Targeted” Surveillance Under Section 702
We all know that the NSA uses word games to hide and downplay its activities. Words like "collect," "conversations," "communications," and even "surveillance" have suffered tortured definitions that create confusion rather than clarity. There’s another one to watch: "targeted" v. "mass"...
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Thursday, May 12, 2016 - 11:15am
Michael Ratner, RIP (Rest in Power)
Michael Ratner, a friend of EFF who dedicated his life as a human rights attorney to fighting for justice, passed away on Wednesday. Michael was a staunch defender of civil liberties, forging new pathways for using the court systems and advocacy to fight for justice. As the president emeritus of...
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Tuesday, March 22, 2016 - 8:45am
Good News For Now: Court Postpones Hearing in Apple v. FBI
A magistrate in Riverside, CA has canceled a hearing that was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon in the Apple v FBI case, at the FBI’s request late Monday. The hearing was part of Apple's challenge to the FBI's demand that the company create a new version of its iOS, which would include a backdoor to...
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Thursday, November 26, 2015 - 6:45am
Stronger Locks, Better Security
What if, in response to the terrorist attacks in Paris, or cybersecurity attacks on companies and government agencies, the FBI had come to the American people and said: In order to keep you safe, we need you to remove all the locks on your doors and windows and replace them with weaker ones. It's...
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Thursday, November 19, 2015 - 10:45am
Baseless Calls to Expand Surveillance Fit Familiar, Cynical Pattern
Like clockwork, cynical calls to expand mass surveillance practices—by continuing the domestic telephone records collection and restricting access to strong encryption—came immediately following the Paris attacks. These calls came before the smoke had even cleared, much less before a serious...
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Tuesday, June 2, 2015 - 6:15pm
USA Freedom Act Passes: What We Celebrate, What We Mourn, and Where We Go From Here
The Senate passed the USA Freedom Act today by 67-32, marking the first time in over thirty years that both houses of Congress have approved a bill placing real restrictions and oversight on the National Security Agency’s surveillance powers. The weakening amendments to the legislation proposed by...
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Monday, June 1, 2015 - 8:30am
Don’t Worry, the Government Still Has Plenty of Surveillance Power If Section 215 Sunsets
The story being spun by the defenders of Section 215 of the Patriot Act and the Obama Administration is that if the law sunsets entirely, the government will lose critical surveillance capabilities. The fearmongering includes President Obama , who said: “heaven forbid we’ve got a problem where we...
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Friday, March 20, 2015 - 3:15pm
Twenty-four Million Wikipedia Users Can’t Be Wrong: Important Allies Join the Fight Against NSA Internet Backbone Surveillance
Last week, the ACLU filed a welcome additional challenge to the NSA’s warrantless Internet backbone surveillance (aka “Upstream” surveillance) on behalf of Wikimedia and a number of other media and human rights organizations. We applaud all of those involved in bringing the case. It adds another...
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(Image: flickr / cc / AK Rockefeller) Views
Wednesday, July 2, 2014 - 7:30am
Flawed Oversight Board Report Endorses NSA's General Warrants
The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) issued a legally flawed and factually incomplete report late Tuesday that endorses Section 702 surveillance. Hiding behind the “complexity” of the technology, it gives short shrift to the very serious privacy concerns that the surveillance has...
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Protesters rally against mass surveillance in Washington DC, on Saturday October 26, 2013. (Photo: Stephen Melkisethian/ Creative Commons/ Flickr) Views
Wednesday, June 4, 2014 - 6:45am
The Top 5 Claims That Defenders of the NSA Have to Stop Making to Remain Credible
Over the past year, as the Snowden revelations have rolled out, the government and its apologists have developed a set of talking points about mass spying that the public has now heard over and over again. From the President, to Hilary Clinton to Rep. Mike Rogers, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and many...
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