Cyberlaw / Internet

Future-Proofing the Fourth Amendment

June 25, 2018

In Carpenter v. United States, Chief Justice John Roberts began the process of future-proofing the Fourth Amendment. In a majority opinion marked by technological sophistication and powerful arguments about arbitrary government surveillance, but overshadowed by four separate dissenting opinions, Carpenter both reframes the Fourth Amendment and reveals its fractured soul. To understand Carpenter is to…

Andrew Guthrie Ferguson

Data Breach Through Social Engineering

March 21, 2018

The recent uproar involving Cambridge Analytica’s unauthorized access to, and dubious use of, personal data belonging to 50 million Facebook users in attempts to support the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump raised a series of important questions. The access to that personal information was enabled by an app developed by University of Cambridge neuroscience lecturer…

Ido Kilovaty

The President’s Duty to Defend Against Cyber-Attacks

February 22, 2018

Recent developments in the ongoing investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 elections have raised interesting questions about the obligations of the current President — or any President — in a situation where a foreign government or its agents have interfered with the American political process or used the Internet in other ways to harm…

H. Jefferson Powell

Fake News and the First Amendment

November 10, 2017

Last week, representatives of several social media companies appeared before Congress to testify about mounting evidence that Russian government sponsored groups sought to influence U.S. elections and American political sentiment by propagating false or misleading news stories, artificially driving online popularity of those stories, and actually fomenting violent demonstrations and clashes. These hearings were only…

Michael Chertoff

Election Advertising Disclosure: Part 2

November 3, 2017

In Part 1 of this post, I focused on how the Honest Ads Act bill would be a valuable step forward in normalizing the status of political ads online. Under this bill, online political ads would be treated more consistently with the influence they now have on the political process—like television or radio, rather than…

Yochai Benkler

Election Advertising Disclosure: Part 1

October 31, 2017

The 2016 U.S. Presidential Election was a watershed moment for how we understand the Internet and democracy. In the 1990s and 2000s, the Net enjoyed wide acclaim as a democratizing technology. In 1997, the Supreme Court hailed it as a platform on which “[t]hrough the use of chat rooms, any person with a phone line…

Yochai Benkler