NoTechFor: Forced Assimilation

Following the terror attack in Denmark of 2015, the state amped upits data analytics capabilities for counter-terrorism within the police and their Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET). Denmark, a country which hosts an established, normalised, and widely accepted public surveillance infrastructure – justified in service of public health and greater centralisation and coordination between government and municipalities in delivery of citizen services – also boasts an intelligence service with extraordinarily expansive surveillance capabilities, and the enjoyment of wide exemptions from data protection regulations.

From No Tech for Tyrants on July 13, 2020

The Dutch government wants to continue to spy on activists’ social media

Investigative journalism of the NRC brought to light that the Dutch NCTV (the National Coordinator for Counterterrorism and Security) uses fake social media accounts to track Dutch activists. The agency also targets activists working in the social justice or anti-discrimination space and tracks their work, sentiments and movements through their social media accounts. This is a clear example of how digital communication allows governments to intensify their surveillance and criminalisation of political opinions outside the mainstream.

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Crowd-Sourced Suspicion Apps Are Out of Control

Technology rarely invents new societal problems. Instead, it digitizes them, supersizes them, and allows them to balloon and duplicate at the speed of light. That’s exactly the problem we’ve seen with location-based, crowd-sourced “public safety” apps like Citizen.

By Matthew Guariglia for Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) on October 21, 2021

Racist and classist predictive policing exists in Europe too

The enduring idea that technology will be able to solve many of the existing problems in society continues to permeate across governments. For the EUObserver, Fieke Jansen and Sarah Chander illustrate some of the problematic and harmful uses of ‘predictive’ algorithmic systems by states and public authorities across the UK and Europe.

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Online proctoring excludes and discriminates

The use of software to automatically detect cheating on online exams – online proctoring – has been the go-to solution for many schools and universities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In this article, Shea Swauger addresses some of the potential discriminatory, privacy and security harms that can impact groups of students across class, gender, race, and disability lines. Swauger provides a critique on how technologies encode “normal” bodies – cisgender, white, able-bodied, neurotypical, male – as the standard and how students who do not (or cannot) conform, are punished by it.

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Decode the Default

Technology has never been colorblind. It’s time to abolish notions of “universal” users of software.

From The Internet Health Report 2020 on January 1, 2021

Race, surveillance and tech

Today, on the Attack Surface Lectures – a series of 8 panels at 8 indie bookstores that Tor Books and I ran to launch the third Little Brother novel in Oct: Race, Surveillance, and Tech with Meredith Whittaker and Malkia Devich-Cyril, hosted by The Booksmith.

By Cory Doctorow for Pluralistic on November 18, 2020

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