Online Privacy’s Comeback Extends to Library

Our data, our selvesWendy Davis posts that the FBI has been persuaded by privacy rights organizations to back down from a National Security Letter they had served to gain intelligence about a user of the nonprofit digital library Internet Archive. This extends a pattern of recent privacy victories noted in recent posts.

You’ll recall the Internet Archive is the organization that provides the “Wayback Machine,” an archive of 55 million old web pages. The EFF and ACLU threatened lawsuits in opposition to the letter, based on a 2006 Congressional amendment to the Patriot Act which restricted the FBI’s ability to order libraries to disclose information about patrons.

Rather than face lawsuits which would focus on the use of such letters, which are accompanied by gag orders on their recipients, the organization backed down.

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