716 CyberSecurity, Privacy and Government Surveillance

The acquisition, management, analysis, dissemination, and security of data are increasing important issues for individuals, commercial enterprises and governments.   New technologies create a more connected and personal digital society.  Every day, transactions engaged in by individuals generate ever expanding amounts of personal information, including credit card transaction information, purchasing histories, bank and other financial transaction information, location information, health information, real property ownership information, information relating to interactions with the criminal justice system, information shared on social media and other types of information.  Not only is the volume of personal information escalating rapidly; much of it is revealed in on line transactions, enabling it to be acquired for multiple uses, and much resides on servers and storage media where it can be accessible or potentially accessible to commercial enterprises and government agencies. New cybersecurity risks are demanding responses from governments as they address attacks on critical infrastructure, election interference and the potential for manipulation of the data used to train artificial intelligence tools.

In both the commercial sector and the government sector, the legal and policy issues associated with data, cybersecurity and surveillance are growing in importance.   Discussion of these issues in either sector cannot ignore the others, because the issues frequently intersect.  They also transcend national boundaries. For example, in President Obama’s proposals to revise government policy towards signals intelligence collection, he states that such policies implicate “the cooperation we receive from other nations on law enforcement, counterterrorism, and other issues; our commercial, economic, and financial interests, including a potential loss of international trust in U.S. firms and the decreased willingness of other nations to participate in international data sharing, privacy, and regulatory regimes …”[1]  This intersection of issues creates particular challenges for existing constitutional, legislative and international governance models.

In the government sector, increased risks such as nation state cyber threats now create new priorities to add to those efforts spurred by the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.  Combating and preventing terrorist and cybersecurity attacks relies heavily on the collection of information through electronic surveillance.  The tension between these efforts and individual privacy creates frictions that are forcing reconsideration of existing methods of mediating these interests.  This tension then creates challenges for long accepted ideas of nation state use of signals intelligence interception and other information gathering operations (such as the gathering of intelligence about potentially hostile governments).  Similar reconsideration is occurring in the commercial sector, where consumers’ desire for confidentiality in the data that relates to them can conflict with markets for information and commercial and entrepreneurial interests that wish to take advantage of such data to provide new goods and services that consumers value.  


[1] Presidential Policy Directive/PPD-28, p. 1 (January 17, 2014).

 

Course Areas of Practice
Course Type
Seminar
Learning Outcomes
Knowledge and understanding of substantive and procedural law
Other professional skills needed for competent and ethical participation as a member of the legal profession
2020
Spring 2020
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

716.01 3
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Group project(s)
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation
David Hoffman, Christopher H. Schroeder Tu 3:00-5:50 pm

The acquisition, management, analysis, dissemination, and security of data are increasing important issues for individuals, commercial enterprises and governments.   New technologies create a more connected and personal digital society.  Every day, transactions engaged in by individuals generate ever expanding amounts of personal information, including credit card transaction information, purchasing histories, bank and other financial transaction information, location information, health information, real property ownership information, information relating to interactions with the criminal justice system, information shared on social media and other types of information.  Not only is the volume of personal information escalating rapidly; much of it is revealed in on line transactions, enabling it to be acquired for multiple uses, and much resides on servers and storage media where it can be accessible or potentially accessible to commercial enterprises and government agencies. New cybersecurity risks are demanding responses from governments as they address attacks on critical infrastructure, election interference and the potential for manipulation of the data used to train artificial intelligence tools.

In both the commercial sector and the government sector, the legal and policy issues associated with data, cybersecurity and surveillance are growing in importance.   Discussion of these issues in either sector cannot ignore the others, because the issues frequently intersect.  They also transcend national boundaries. For example, in President Obama’s proposals to revise government policy towards signals intelligence collection, he states that such policies implicate “the cooperation we receive from other nations on law enforcement, counterterrorism, and other issues; our commercial, economic, and financial interests, including a potential loss of international trust in U.S. firms and the decreased willingness of other nations to participate in international data sharing, privacy, and regulatory regimes …”[1]  This intersection of issues creates particular challenges for existing constitutional, legislative and international governance models.

In the government sector, increased risks such as nation state cyber threats now create new priorities to add to those efforts spurred by the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.  Combating and preventing terrorist and cybersecurity attacks relies heavily on the collection of information through electronic surveillance.  The tension between these efforts and individual privacy creates frictions that are forcing reconsideration of existing methods of mediating these interests.  This tension then creates challenges for long accepted ideas of nation state use of signals intelligence interception and other information gathering operations (such as the gathering of intelligence about potentially hostile governments).  Similar reconsideration is occurring in the commercial sector, where consumers’ desire for confidentiality in the data that relates to them can conflict with markets for information and commercial and entrepreneurial interests that wish to take advantage of such data to provide new goods and services that consumers value.  


[1] Presidential Policy Directive/PPD-28, p. 1 (January 17, 2014).

 

Syllabus: File 716.01.Spring2020-syllabus.docx

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2019
Spring 2019
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

716.01 3
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Group project(s)
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation
Christopher H. Schroeder, David Hoffman Tu 9:00-11:45 AM 4044

The acquisition, management, analysis, dissemination, and security of personal information are increasing important issues for individuals, commercial enterprises and governments. New technologies create a more connected and personal digital society. Every day, transactions engaged in by individuals generate ever expanding amounts of personal information, including credit card transaction information, purchasing histories, bank and other financial transaction information, location information, health information, real property ownership information, information relating to interactions with the criminal justice system, information shared on social media and other types of information. Not only is the volume of personal information escalating rapidly; much of it resides on servers and storage media where it can be accessible or potentially accessible to commercial enterprises and government agencies. In both the commercial sector and the government sector, the legal and policy issues associated with personal information are growing in importance. Discussion of these issues in either sector cannot ignore the other, because the issues frequently intersect. They also transcend national boundaries. For example, in President Obama's proposals to revise government policy towards signals intelligence collection, he states that such policies implicate "the cooperation we receive from other nations on law enforcement, counterterrorism, and other issues; our commercial, economic, and financial interests, including a potential loss of international trust in U.S. firms and the decreased willingness of other nations to participate in international data sharing, privacy, and regulatory regimes ..." This intersection of issues creates particular challenges for existing constitutional, legislative and international governance models.

In the government sector, many of the most pressing problems relate to the national security state that has developed after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The crucial battleground for combating and preventing future terrorist attacks is the intelligence battleground. In the United States, as well as in other countries, efforts to acquire and properly analyze intelligence with respect to terrorists, their plans and their plots, have expanded dramatically. The tension between these efforts and individual privacy creates frictions that are forcing reconsideration of existing methods of mediating them. Similar reconsideration is occurring in the commercial sector, where consumers' desire for confidentiality in the data that relates to them can conflict with markets for information and commercial and entrepreneurial interests that wish to take advantage of such data to provide new goods and services that consumers value.

This course explores the legal and policy issues associated with concerns about information privacy, in the commercial and government sectors and in the intersection of these two sectors.
GRADING: 30% Class Participation, 30% Participation in a Class Debates and Debate Summaries, 40% 2 10-page response papers

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2017
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

716.01 3
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Reflective Writing
  • Group project(s)
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation
Christopher H. Schroeder, David Hoffman Tu 9:00-11:45 AM 3000

The acquisition, management, analysis, dissemination, and security of personal information are increasing important issues for individuals, commercial enterprises and governments. New technologies create a more connected and personal digital society. Every day, transactions engaged in by individuals generate ever expanding amounts of personal information, including credit card transaction information, purchasing histories, bank and other financial transaction information, location information, health information, real property ownership information, information relating to interactions with the criminal justice system, information shared on social media and other types of information. Not only is the volume of personal information escalating rapidly; much of it resides on servers and storage media where it can be accessible or potentially accessible to commercial enterprises and government agencies. In both the commercial sector and the government sector, the legal and policy issues associated with personal information are growing in importance. Discussion of these issues in either sector cannot ignore the other, because the issues frequently intersect. They also transcend national boundaries. For example, in President Obama's proposals to revise government policy towards signals intelligence collection, he states that such policies implicate "the cooperation we receive from other nations on law enforcement, counterterrorism, and other issues; our commercial, economic, and financial interests, including a potential loss of international trust in U.S. firms and the decreased willingness of other nations to participate in international data sharing, privacy, and regulatory regimes ..." This intersection of issues creates particular challenges for existing constitutional, legislative and international governance models.

In the government sector, many of the most pressing problems relate to the national security state that has developed after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The crucial battleground for combating and preventing future terrorist attacks is the intelligence battleground. In the United States, as well as in other countries, efforts to acquire and properly analyze intelligence with respect to terrorists, their plans and their plots, have expanded dramatically. The tension between these efforts and individual privacy creates frictions that are forcing reconsideration of existing methods of mediating them. Similar reconsideration is occurring in the commercial sector, where consumers' desire for confidentiality in the data that relates to them can conflict with markets for information and commercial and entrepreneurial interests that wish to take advantage of such data to provide new goods and services that consumers value.

This course explores the legal and policy issues associated with concerns about information privacy, in the commercial and government sectors and in the intersection of these two sectors.
GRADING: 30% Class Participation, 30% Participation in a Class Debates and Debate Summaries, 40% 2 10-page response papers

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

*Please note that this information is for planning purposes only, and should not be relied upon for the schedule for a given semester. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered.