Aaron's Law and Other Unfinished Business

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Description The criminalisation of unauthorised access is the original sin of computer crimes law. The free software community has long understood this but now everyone else is catching up. In the years following Aaron Swartz's death, the wider public has become increasingly aware of the importance of security research for the protection of their personal data. The role of hackers in journalism, as whistleblowers and journalistic sources, is increasingly visible. And free societies will always need protest and civil disobedience to raise awkward questions. While attempts to introduce "Aaron's Law" in the US ultimately failed, in this talk I'll talk about the developments in a number of jurisdictions that make Aarons Law-type reforms a realistic project in the next few years. In particular, I'll discuss the important implications of the EU draft whistleblowing directive for the free software community, the work I'll be doing through 2019 and the coalition we need to build in order to make Aaron's Law a reality.
Website(s)
Type Talk
Kids session No
Keyword(s) political
Tags law, whistleblowing, hacking, Aaron Swartz, Aarons Law, Lauri Love, extradition, security research, journalism
Processing assembly Assembly:Free Software Foundation Europe
Person organizing
Language en - English
en - English
Other sessions... ... further results

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Starts at 2018/12/28 18:00
Ends at 2018/12/28 19:00
Duration 60 minutes
Location Room:Lecture room M2

Earlier this year British-Finnish hacker Lauri Love won an important victory at the High Court in London, which ensured that he would not be extradited to the United States and made it unlikely that the same thing would happen to others in the future.

Lauri had been indicted by prosecutors in three US federal court districts, who alleged he had been part of #OpLastResort, the series of online protests that followed the death of Aaron Swartz. Lauri's case highlighted the prosecutorial malpractice that did so much to harm Aaron, but one thing it did not do was challenge the unfocused and outdated criminal statutes that put Aaron in harm's way in the first place. Aaron's Law remains important, unfinished business.

The criminalisation of unauthorised access is the original sin of computer crimes law. The free software community has long understood this but now everyone else is catching up. In the years following Aaron Swartz's death, the wider public has become increasingly aware of the importance of security research for the protection of their personal data. The role of hackers in journalism, as whistleblowers and journalistic sources, is increasingly visible. And free societies will always need protest and civil disobedience to raise awkward questions.

While attempts to introduce "Aaron's Law" in the US ultimately failed, in this talk I'll talk about the developments in a number of jurisdictions that make Aarons Law-type reforms a realistic project in the next few years. In particular, I'll discuss the important implications of the EU draft whistleblowing directive for the free software community, the work I'll be doing through 2019 and the coalition we need to build in order to make Aaron's Law a reality.