• Archive for December, 2014

    New Andrews Report Examines Webcams and Privacy

    by  • December 23, 2014 • Faculty Scholarship • 0 Comments

    [Reposted from IIT Chicago-Kent News]


    Webcams have transformed entertainment, medicine, home security, and many other fields. But they have also been used to spy on people in shocking ways. Hundreds of thousands of people have been the targets of surreptitious remote webcam activation, yet there has been no meaningful legislative response to the problem.

    digital-peepholes-report-cover

    The Digital Peepholes report is available for download at www.ckprivacy.org.

    In Digital Peepholes, a new report from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, Distinguished Professor Lori Andrews and attorneys Michael Holloway and Dan Massoglia document the risk and propose policy solutions.The two-year investigation undertaken by faculty, students, and legal fellows at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law uncovered the following:

    • Everyone is vulnerable to being spied on through their webcams.
    • The FBI has asked that federal laws be changed so that law enforcement can use people’s webcams to gather evidence about what crimes people may be committing through or near their computers.
    • One company alone installed remote activation technology on 400,000 rental computers and photographed its customers having sex, gambling online, and searching the Internet.
    • Existing laws do not protect people sufficiently.

    Digital Peepholes offers policy recommendations to protect people’s rights on the web. The comprehensive policy paper is available without charge at www.ckprivacy.org and the authors are available for comment.

    IIT Chicago-Kent has been at the forefront of issues arising at the convergence of technology and the law since the creation of the mainframe. The CK Privacy program at IIT Chicago-Kent provides an opportunity for students, faculty members, policymakers, and the public to assess the ways in which technologies present new challenges to privacy and data protection, as well as to develop technical and legal ways to better ensure privacy and improve data protection.

    For more information, please contact:

    Chicago-Kent Research Paper Series No. 6.8

    by  • December 16, 2014 • Faculty Scholarship • 0 Comments

    The Chicago-Kent Research Paper Series (RPS) is an SSRN ejournal publication, distributed monthly, that highlights recently published articles, new abstracts, and works in progress by Chicago-Kent faculty.

    The latest edition (6.8) of the RPS was distributed this week. This edition includes the following articles:

    • Christopher Buccafusco, Well-Being and Public Policy (with J. Bronsteen and J. Masur), Oxford Handbook of Law & Economics (forthcoming).

    • Harold Krent, Inconsistency and Angst in District Court Resolution of Social Security Disability Appeals (with S. Morris), working paper.

    • Martin Malin, Education Reform and Labor-Management Cooperation: What Role for the Law? 45 University of Toledo Law Review 527 (2014).

    Click here to see the abstract page for the Series and to subscribe to the ejournal.

    Atuahene on Mandela

    by  • December 5, 2014 • Faculty Commentary • 0 Comments

    On the first anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s death, Professor Bernadette Atuahene examines the leader’s legacy in a guest post at The Faculty Lounge blog. Read an excerpt below:

    Today is the first anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s death. He became an international icon because he chose reconciliation and forgiveness over war and vengeance. There is no doubt that Mandela was a great man and a great leader. But, now that we have mourned, it is time to take a critical look at his legacy. When we scratch beneath the surface, we find that the political bargain that he brokered to bring an end to apartheid while avoiding massive bloodletting and economic disintegration is now falling apart.

    Due to massive colonial and apartheid era land theft, when apartheid ended in 1994, 87% of the land was owned by whites although they constituted less than 10% of the population. The bargain allowed whites got to keep their land despite how it was acquired. In exchange, blacks got the promise of land reform. This year, South Africa celebrates 20 years of democracy and the state has transferred only about 10% of the land from whites back to blacks. Whites have secure land rights while the promise made to blacks has gone unfulfilled. Needless to say, many blacks are losing their patience.

    Read the rest of this post at The Faculty Lounge.

    Vogel Contributes to Lawfare

    by  • December 4, 2014 • Faculty Commentary • 0 Comments

    Visiting Assistant Professor Ryan Vogel has authored a new post on Lawfare, a leading national security blog. The post analyzes a preliminary examination of U.S. detention policies in Afghanistan that has been advanced by the International Criminal Court’s prosecutor. Read an excerpt below:

    As Professors Ryan Goodman and David Bosco have both noted in excellent posts at Just Security and Foreign Policy, respectively, over the past seven years, the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) Prosecutor has quietly but persistently advanced a “preliminary examination” of the conflict in Afghanistan.  Although it has been clear that the United States was one of the subjects of this examination, the Prosecutor had avoided direct references to U.S. forces in public documents. This changed on Tuesday when, for the first time, the Prosecutor’s annual report alleged that “members of the US military in Afghanistan used so-called ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ against conflict-related detainees,” which could amount to the war crimes of “cruel treatment, torture or outrages upon personal dignity as defined under international jurisprudence.”

    Whatever one’s views regarding U.S. detention policy in Afghanistan from 2003-2008, the alleged U.S. conduct is surely not what the world had in mind when it established the ICC to address “the most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole.”  The ICC was designed to end impunity for the most egregious and shocking breaches of the law, and it is hard to see how alleged detainee abuse by U.S. forces meets that standard.

    But even if a case against U.S. forces for alleged detention-related abuses is not dismissed because it is insufficiently grave to meet the thresholds for the ICC to proceed, it also seems questionable for the ICC to pursue such a case for reasons of complementarity (i.e., the principle that the ICC is not to move forward when a State is genuinely able and willing to investigate and prosecute).  The United States has one of the most developed and effective military justice systems in the world, which has the demonstrated ability and willingness to hold its own accountable for violations of the law, including any violations in the context of detention operations.  Indeed, there have not been many issues more thoroughly investigated by the military and U.S. Government in the past decade than that of detainee treatment.  Ironically, the Prosecutor’s report even cites some of these very investigations as evidence of crimes – or worse, evidence of a criminal policy – rather than citing these reports as acknowledgement of accountability measures.

    Click here to read the rest of this post at Lawfare.