Have you ever wanted to talk with the Electronic Frontier Foundation about the risks of talking in public about security issues, especially in connected Internet of Things devices? Tomorrow, you’ll get your chance.
Information security has never been more important: now that everything from a car to a voting machine is just a computer in a fancy case, being able to tell the difference between secure systems and insecure ones is a literal life-or-death matter.
But security researchers have never faced more threats. When security researchers divulge flaws in computers, the companies that make those computers are often tempted to shoot the messenger, threatening civil and criminal retaliation against their critics.
Over the course of decades, short-sighted IT companies and federal prosecutors have twisted the law, especially a quasi-copyright law designed to prop up Digital Rights Management (DRM), so that factual disclosures about defects in widely used systems can result in researchers being sued, or even threatened with jail time.
This year, we asked the US Copyright Office and the Librarian of Congress to make a rule clarifying the right of security researchers to discover when devices contain dangerous defects. It’s part of a wider project to overturn Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act so it can’t be abused to suppress legitimate research and speech.
Tomorrow, we’ll be hosting a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) from 12-3PM Pacific (3-6PM Eastern); we hope you’ll come and discuss the issue with us!
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Author: Cory Doctorow