Resources from your friendly NYU Librarian

I had occasion to visit the NYU law librarian recently. I was looking for information regarding WestLaw’s search strategy for federal cases. In addition to being very helpul, Gretchen also send me this link of privacy resources. The site is really quite impressive, and not something I had seen before. There are links to privacy preserving software (PETs), web and email anonymizers, reserach links and many other resources. Worth checking out.

She also pointed me to this link to an EPIC story regarding FBI collection of individual data:

FBI Exempts Massive Database from Privacy Act Protections
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has exempted the FBI Data Warehouse System, from important Privacy Act safeguards. The database ingests troves of personally identifiable information including race, birthdate, biometric information, social security numbers, and financial information from various government agencies. The database contains information on a surprisingly broad category of individuals, including “subjects, suspects, victims, witnesses, complainants, informants, sources, bystanders, law enforcement personnel, intelligence personnel, other responders, administrative personnel, consultants, relatives, and associates who may be relevant to the investigation or intelligence operation; individuals who are identified in open source information or commercial databases, or who are associated, related, or have a nexus to the FBI’s missions; individuals whose information is collected and maintained for information system user auditing and security purposes.” The Federal Bureau of Investigation has exempted these records from the notification, access, and amendment provisions of the Privacy Act. Earlier this year, EPIC opposed the Automated Targeting System, another massive government database that the Department of Homeland Security exempted from Privacy Act provisions.

Scary, indeed.