What You Don't Know About Internet Security Will Definitely Hurt You
October 22, 2013

This is the third installment in a series on whether and how to hold software makers financially liable for the insecurity of their products. Part I offered an overview of the problem of insecure code; Part II countered the notion that the technical

Courts Can Influence National Security Without Doing a Single Thing
October 21, 2013

One of the most persistent fights in the national security arena since the September 11 attacks has been about the proper allocation of power between two branches of government: the Executive and the courts.

Don't Ban Armed Robots in the U.S.
October 17, 2013

What if armed drones were not just piloted remotely by humans in far-away bunkers, but they were programmed under certain circumstances to select and fire at some targets entirely on their own?

Unlawfully Detained by the U.S. Government? Don't Bother Suing.
October 17, 2013

Last Monday, on the same day as the opening of the new Supreme Court term, the federal appeals court in San Francisco threw out a damages suit by a former Guantánamo detainee who alleged that his detention and his treatment while detained had been un

The Government Thinks It's Legal to Access Your Emails. This Theory Explains Why.
October 16, 2013

Ladar Levison, owner of the now-defunct encrypted email site Lavabit, made headlines back in August when he shut the service down to avoid “becom[ing] complicit in crimes against the American people.” But the Lavabit saga is far from over.

When Companies Are Hacked, Customers Bear the Brunt. But Not for Long.
October 15, 2013

For the past two weeks, Security States has been exploring the possibility of liability for software design flaws. It’s a critical issue—and likely the right answer from an economic perspective. But at this point that answer is theoretical.

We Need to Regulate Surveillance in Our Cities Before It's Too Late
October 14, 2013

The New York Times reports today that "Privacy Fears Grow as Cities Increase Surveillance." The main theme is that municipal police and law enforcement agencies around the country are deploying new and more sophisticated data gathering and analysis t

Why Is Our Cybersecurity So Insecure?
October 11, 2013

It’s true: perfectly secure software is a pipedream. Experts agree that we cannot make software of “nontrivial size and complexity” free of vulnerabilities. Moreover, consumers want feature-rich, powerful software and they want it quickly; and this tends to produce huge, bulky, poorly-written software, released early and without adequate care for security.

Obama's Crackdown on Leaks Won't Stop Secrets From Coming Out
October 10, 2013

The Obama administration is engaged in an unprecedented campaign to control the flow of information to the press, characterized by “legal policies . . .

"Take the Drugs, But Don't Take the People's Bitcoins"
October 09, 2013

The latest Edward Snowden leak and the FBI’s shut-down last week of an online drug market might not seem connected. But they actually have an important common thread: an unregulated virtual currency called bitcoin.Snowden’s latest bombshell, published by the Washington Post, shares details of NSA’s infiltration of Tor, an Internet browser that cloaks its users in anonymity.