Amul Kalia, EFF

Amul Kalia


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Past articles by Amul:


Why We're Helping The Stranger Unseal Electronic Surveillance Records

Consider this: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has been going around talking about “responsible encryption” for some time now— proselytizing for encryption that’s somehow only accessible by the government—something we all know to be unworkable. If the Department of Justice (DOJ) is taking... → Read More


Here's How Congress Should Respond to the Equifax Breach

There is very little doubt that Equifax’s negligent security practices were a major contributing factor in the massive breach of 145.5-million Americans’ most sensitive information. In the wake of the breach, EFF has spent a lot of time thinking through how to ensure that such a catastrophic breach... → Read More


Expanding E-Verify is a Privacy Disaster in the Making

E-Verify is a massive federal data system used to verify the eligibility of job applicants to work in the United States. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) administer E-Verify. Until... → Read More


Victory! California Just Reformed Its Gang Databases and Made Them More Accountable

Gov. Jerry Brown has signed A.B. 90, a bill that EFF advocated for to bring additional accountability and transparency to the various shared gang databases maintained by the State of California. With a campaign organized by a broad coalition of civil liberties organizations—such as Youth Justice... → Read More


LinkNYC Improves Privacy Policy, Yet Problems Remain

Since first appearing on the streets of New York City in 2016, LinkNYC’s free public Wi-Fi kiosks have prompted controversy. The initial version of the kiosks’ privacy policy was particularly invasive: it allowed for LinkNYC to store personal browser history, time spent on a particular website, and... → Read More


Will the Equifax Data Breach Finally Spur the Courts (and Lawmakers) to Recognize Data Harms?

This summer 143 million Americans had their most sensitive information breached, including their name, addresses, social security numbers (SSNs), and date of birth. The breach occurred at Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting agencies that conducts the credit checks relied on by many... → Read More


Judge Cracks Down on LinkedIn’s Shameful Abuse of Computer Break-In Law

Good news out of a court in San Francisco: a judge just issued an early ruling against LinkedIn’s abuse of the notorious Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) to block a competing service from perfectly legal uses of publicly available data on its website. LinkedIn’s behavior is just the sort of bad... → Read More


Student Privacy Tips for Students

Students: As you get ready to go back to school, add "review your student privacy rights" to your back-to-school to-do list, right next to ordering books and buying supplies. Exciting new technology in the classroom can also mean privacy violations, including the chance that your personal devices... → Read More


It’s Time to Strengthen California’s Public Records Law

In 2015, the Center for Public Integrity undertook a major investigation aimed at grading all 50 states to ascertain their transparency and accountability. When it came to California, the state received an abysmal ‘F’ rating in the category focusing on public access to information. That is... → Read More


Student Privacy Tips for Parents

The beginning of the school year is right around the corner. Over the summer, your school may have acquired new devices, software, and educational technology (or ed tech) to use in classrooms. Or, your school may have expanded existing technology programs, or may be thinking about adopting new... → Read More


Deciphering China’s VPN Ban

This weekend Apple took a dispiriting step in the policing of its Chinese mainland App store: the company removed several Virtual Private Network (VPN) applications that allowed users to circumvent the China’s extensive internet censorship apparatus. In effect, the company has once again aided the... → Read More


Crossing the U.S. Border? Here’s How to Securely Wipe Your Computer

Many people crossing the U.S. border are concerned about the amount of power that the government has asserted to search and examine travelers’ possessions, including searching through or copying contents of digital devices, like photos, emails, and browsing history. The frequency of these intrusive... → Read More

How to Protect Your Privacy From Your Internet Service Provider

Our representatives decided to prioritize corporate interests over our Internet privacy. Here is what you can do to protect yourself after FCC repeal. → Read More


Here’s How to Protect Your Privacy From Your Internet Service Provider

We pay our monthly Internet bill to be able to access the Internet. We don’t pay it to give our Internet service provider (ISP) a chance to collect and sell our private data to make more money. This was apparently lost on congressional Republicans as they voted to strip their constituents of their privacy. → Read More


How Tech Companies Can Fight for Their Users in the Courts

There are a lot of political uncertainties around the incoming Trump administration, but the threats to civil liberties are potentially greater than ever. President Obama failed to rein in the surveillance state, and Mr. Trump has nominated cabinet members like Mike Pompeo who are big fans of bulk surveillance. Now, given Mr. → Read More


With Windows 10, Microsoft Blatantly Disregards User Choice and Privacy: A Deep Dive

Microsoft had an ambitious goal with the launch of Windows 10: a billion devices running the software by the end of 2018. In its quest to reach that goal, the company aggressively pushed Windows 10 on its users and went so far as to offer free upgrades for a whole year. However, the company’s strategy for user adoption has trampled on essential aspects of modern computing: user choice and… → Read More


Zendesk and the Art of Trademark Trolling

Zen. The word has come to be associated with simplicity, intuition, and a sense of enlightenment. It originates from a branch of Buddhism that emphasizes meditation and self-reflection as the way to achieve enlightenment. Naturally, given the cultural cachet of the word, it’s been adopted to various degrees by businesses and other organizations. One of these is Zendesk, maker of customer… → Read More


VTech: We Are Not Liable If We Fail to Protect Your Data, EFF: Oh Yes You Are!

If you are a company that collects customer data, it’s your job to protect it. Your customers expect it. You can’t dodge that responsibility by altering your terms and conditions, especially when finding them is equivalent to playing “Where’s Waldo?” on your website. This is not only outrageous, but in EFF’s view, also not legally enforceable. VTech, Hong Kong-based maker of many children’s… → Read More


Companies Should Resist Government Pressure and Stand Up for Free Speech

EFF has been steadfast in its criticism of officials like FBI Director James Comey, who have implored tech companies to provide a backdoor to their customers’ encrypted communications. Now it appears as though the White House would like a backdoor to the First Amendment’s free speech protections by requiring private tech companies to monitor, censor, and automatically report speech on topics… → Read More


The Punishment Should Fit the Crime: Matthew Keys and the CFAA

One of the basic tenets of a civilized society is that the punishment should be proportionate with the crime. What essentially amounts to vandalism should not result in even the remote possibility of a 25-year jail sentence. But that very possibility is on the table in the government’s case against journalist Matthew Keys, whose sentencing hearing is about one month off. → Read More