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AIC Seminar Series

The Time-Traveler Threat to Privacy

Brad TempletonElectronic Frontier Foundation[Home Page]

Notice:  hosted by Neil Yorke-Smith

Date:  2007-11-13 at 16:00

Location:  EJ228 (SRI E building)  (Directions)

   Abstract

Automation allows privacy invasion to scale up resulting in a massive change in the balance of power in surveillance. AI technologies such as face recognition, speech recognition, natural language understanding and general systems for the identification and understanding of human behaviours present significant risks. It is not sufficient to consider simply current technology in understanding these risks, because cheap storage means that present-day activities can be recorded and then analysed by more advanced systems in the future, resulting in a retroactive threat to privacy.

The talk will discuss the value of privacy, changes to the law, technologies that threaten it, and attempts at solutions. Also discussed will be current efforts by the EFF at stopping the encroachment of such systems, such as our legal battle with AT&T over alleged assistance with warrentless wiretaps for the NSA.

   Bio for Brad Templeton

Brad Templeton founded and ran ClariNet Communications Corp., the first internet-based content company, then sold it to Newsedge Corporation in 1997. ClariNet publishes an online electronic newspaper delivered for live reading on subscribers machines. He has been active in the computer network community since 1979, participated in the building and growth of USENET from its earliest days and in 1987 he founded and edited rec.humor.funny, the world’s most widely read computerized conference on that network, and today the world’s longest running blog. He has been a software company founder, and is the author of a dozen packaged microcomputer software products. He is chairman of the board of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the leading civil rights advocacy group for cyberspace. He also sits on the advisory boards for a few internet startups. Currently he is building a new startup to reinvent the phone call. He is also on the board of the Foresight Institute (a Nanotech think-tank) and BitTorrent, Inc.

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