70 episodes

Find out how technology is reshaping our lives every day and explore the new powers of governments and companies.

Technology Pill Privacy International

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Find out how technology is reshaping our lives every day and explore the new powers of governments and companies.

    Election Observation: Data, Elections and a trip to Kenya

    Election Observation: Data, Elections and a trip to Kenya

    This week we’re joined by Lucy and Laura to discuss the use of technology in elections, and their time monitoring the Kenyan Presidential Election in 2022.


    Human rights abuses including unlawful killings by police, violence at Kenya's 2017 election: https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/08/27/kenya-post-election-killings-abuse
    Claims of fraud from Kenya's last election: https://www.cartercenter.org/countries/kenya.html
    PI and the Carter Center's joint election report: https://privacyinternational.org/long-read/5053/our-final-report-kenyas-2022-election-collaboration-carter-center-election-expert
    Challenge to the 2022 election result and Supreme Court decision: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-africa-62768439
    More about the use of data in elections: https://privacyinternational.org/taxonomy/term/848
    Our data and elections checklist: https://privacyinternational.org/advocacy/3093/technology-data-and-elections-checklist-election-cycle

    • 36 min
    Protecting the protectors: a case from Colombia

    Protecting the protectors: a case from Colombia

    This week we're speaking to Claudia Duque an Human Rights Defender and journalist for over 25 years, reported on crimes occurred during armed conflict and Emi, a Colombian lawyer defending press freedom. Claudia has been subjected to death threats, and was given official protection by the Colombian Government, including an armoured car. However, that protection was used to surveil her, including through a GPS tracker installed in the car without her knowledge.

    Listen to find out more!


    The organisation who put us in touch with Claudia is called Media Defence, they are an international human rights organisation which provides legal defence to journalists, citizen journalists and independent media around the world who are under threat for their reporting. Find out more about them and their work: https://www.mediadefence.org/

    You can also read more about Claudia, her work, and the cases she's taken forward on Media Defence's website:


    Claudia's case against the former Administrative Department of Security: https://latamjournalismreview.org/articles/after-more-than-20-years-court-confirms-responsibility-of-the-colombian-state-in-violating-human-rights-of-journalist-claudia-julieta-duque/

    More about Claudia: https://www.mediadefence.org/news/hope-and-resilience-claudia-duque/

    If you're a climate activist fearing surveillance, these tips might be handy: https://privacyinternational.org/long-read/5000/how-avoid-social-media-monitoring-guide-climate-activists

    For more detail on the surveillance experiences faced by human rights defenders, read: https://privacyinternational.org/campaigns/being-target

    To read more about GPS technology, visit: https://privacyinternational.org/explainer/4796/electronic-monitoring-using-gps-tags-tech-primer

    • 45 min
    MI5 Lied...for years: a win for privacy

    MI5 Lied...for years: a win for privacy

    In January 2023, the UK's Investigatory Powers Tribunal handed down a landmark judgment. The Tribunal held that there were “very serious failings” at the highest levels of MI5 - the UK's domestic intelligence agency - to comply with privacy safeguards from as early as 2014, and that successive Home Secretaries did not to enquire into or resolve these long-standing rule-breaking despite obvious red flags.

    In this episode, we talk to Meg Goulding, a lawyer at the UK-based campaigning organisation, Liberty, who was a solicitor instructed on the case, and Nour Haidar, a lawyer and member of the legal team at PI to discuss what this ruling actually means for the ongoing fight against mass surveillance.

    The way our data was handled by MI5 amounts to a significant intrusion into potentially millions of people’s fundamental right to privacy. This case was a critical mechanism of holding MI5 accountable for failing to handle the data they hold in a lawful manner. Agencies tasked with protecting national security process huge amounts of sensitive information. Due to the nature of their work, their operations can’t be subjected to the same levels of scrutiny and transparency that we can demand of other government institutions, yet they are not above the law. That is why this case is so important: it is one of the only tools we have to ensure that our right to privacy is respected by the UK intelligence agencies.


    - PI's Case page for Liberty and PI v Security Service and Secretary of State for the Home Department IPT/20/01/CH

    - PI's Q&A explaining the judgment

    - Liberty's case page

    - PI's Long-read explaining arguments in the case, including key disclosure

    - Home Secretary statement "as compliant as possible"

    • 1 hr 4 min
    Producing Real Change: Our 2022

    Producing Real Change: Our 2022

    This week we're having our own little christmas party, discussing things we've achieved throughout 2022. 

    Read more about the things we've achieved throughout the year, and donate to PI as much or as little as you can afford.


    As ever, with a huge thank you to Sepia! 

    dj997 via freesound

    acclivity via freesound

    Marta Tsvettsikh via freesound


    Sky News

    • 30 min
    How to Investigate Digital Forensics: Speaking to the UK's Former Forensics Regulator

    How to Investigate Digital Forensics: Speaking to the UK's Former Forensics Regulator

    This week we speak  to Gillian Tully, the UK’s former forensic regulator about the  importance and challenges that come with trying to ensure that forensic  evidence submitted in court is of a high quality.

    More about Gillian Tully: https://www.kcl.ac.uk/people/gillian-tully

    Original Phone Extraction podcast: https://privacyinternational.org/video/3786/podcast-extraction

    GOS tag complaint: Challenge to systemic quality failures of GPS tags submitted to Forensic Science Regulator

    Why Forensics Matter: Immigration officers and the quality of evidence in the UK: https://privacyinternational.org/news-analysis/4740/why-forensics-matter-immigration-officers-and-quality-evidence-uk

    Push This Button For Evidence: Digital Forensics: https://privacyinternational.org/explainer/3022/push-button-evidence-digital-forensics

    Police Linked to Hacking Campaign to Frame Indian Activists: https://www.wired.com/story/modified-elephant-planted-evidence-hacking-police/

    Unpacking the evidence elasticity of digital traces: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/23311886.2022.2103946

    Forensic science and the criminal justice system: a blueprint for change (House of Lords Science and Technology Select Committee report): https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201719/ldselect/ldsctech/333/33302.htm

    NIST Computer Forensics Tool Testing Program (CFTT) https://www.nist.gov/itl/ssd/software-quality-group/computer-forensics-tool-testing-program-cftt

    Post Office Horizon scandal: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-56718036

    With my fridge as my witness?! https://privacyinternational.org/long-read/3026/my-fridge-my-witness

    • 43 min
    Corporate Power with Cory Doctorow

    Corporate Power with Cory Doctorow

    This week we're talking to Cory Doctorow about his new book Chokepoint Capitalism - coauthored with Rebecca Giblin, his as yet unpublished next book The Internet Con: How to Seize the Means of Computation, and how corporate power is shaping our rights.

    Quick corrections! 

    - GDPR compensation is in theory possible through court action: https://ico.org.uk/your-data-matters/data-protection-and-journalism/taking-your-case-to-court-and-claiming-compensation/

    - GDPR Article 80(2) not Section 20 something as I stated! 


    - Cory's website: https://craphound.com/

    - Chokepoint Capitalism coauthored with Rebecca Giblin: https://doctorow.medium.com/what-is-chokepoint-capitalism-b885c4cb2719

    - Giphy and Meta: https://privacyinternational.org/press-release/4911/uk-tribunal-agrees-metas-acquisition-giphy-harms-competition

    - Chokepoint Capitalism: the audiobook: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/doctorow/chokepoint-capitalism-an-audiobook-amazon-wont-sell

    - How to leave dying social media platforms (without losing your friends): https://doctorow.medium.com/how-to-leave-dying-social-media-platforms-9fc550fe5ab

    - Cory on Mastodon: https://mamot.fr/@doctorow and https://mamot.fr/@pluralistic

    - PI on Mastodon: https://mastodon.xyz/@privacyint

    - Crad Kilodney documentary: https://vimeo.com/108567007

    - Algorithms Exposed: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/825974 or https://algorithms.exposed/

    - Bush V Gore election scandal: https://www.britannica.com/event/Bush-v-Gore

    - Goldacre report: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/better-broader-safer-using-health-data-for-research-and-analysis

    - Amazon and NHS: https://privacyinternational.org/node/3298

    - Rida Qadri: https://ridaqadri.net/research/ and some of her writing on tuyul apps: https://www.vice.com/en/article/7kvpng/delivery-drivers-are-using-grey-market-apps-to-make-their-jobs-suck-less

    - Oh for fuck's sake, not this f*****g b******t again : https://boingboing.net/2018/09/04/illegal-math.html

    - Dan Kaminsky's work on Colour blindness: https://dankaminsky.com/2010/12/15/dankam/

    - How to get the most out of your Data Subject Access Request: https://privacyinternational.org/explainer/3845/71-tips-how-make-most-out-your-dsar

    • 1 hr 35 min

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