Bruce Schneier appeared on a panel with Jessica Stern (co-author of Isis) and Gabriella Blum (co-author of The Future of Violence).
Bruce Schneier gave the closing keynote at The Second Annual Cato Surveillance Conference.
For some odd reason, data privacy maven Bruce Schneier is an optimist. It's odd because, according to Schneier, there's practically no such thing as data privacy. Just about everything we do these days is under some form of electronic surveillance, with governments and corporations eager to record and analyze our every action.
But when Schneier holds forth on Friday at Harvard University, as part of the ongoing HUBweek festivities, he'll reassure his listeners that the cause is not lost, that our online privacy will someday be ensured.
Bruce Schneier participated in a panel at Free and Safe in Cyberspace 2015, with Bart Preneel, Richard Stallman, Andreas Wild, Jovan Golic, Bjoern Rupp, Michael Sieber, Melle Van den Berg, Pierre Chastanet, and moderator Rufo Guerreschi.
Is it feasible to provide ordinary citizens access to affordable and user-friendly end-2-end IT services with constitutionally-meaningful levels of user-trustworthiness, as a supplement to their every-day computing devices? If so, how? What scale of investments are needed?
If the subject is security, chances are Bruce Schneier has an opinion on it, and that opinion has been published somewhere—on his blog, in the New York Times, on the BBC, in the Guardian, in Wired, in one of his 13 books. You get the point. On security, Schneier is among the most well-known and most prolific authorities in the world. Since coming to prominence in the mid-90s through his writings on cryptography, he has testified on the floor of Congress, served on several government committees, coined the term 'security theater' in the wake of 9/11, and hooked a global following of some quarter-million readers through his website and newsletter alone.
The episode in brief:
- Bruce Schneier talks about privacy and security
- His new book Data and Goliath
- The hidden battles to collect your data and control your world
- The nonsense of data vs. metadata
- Why privacy is not a changeable social norm
- The harm ubiquitous mass surveillance does to our society
Astute regular listeners may have observed that Dr. J is becoming more and more intrigued with the related issues of privacy and security. These apply to online and mobile phone technology. Both are thoroughly involved in communicating with your social networks.
Data and Goliath is a fascinating exploration of this post-Snowden world we live in. It shows how the back-doors that technology companies were forced to implement for the NSA, have actually become weapons for other agencies and hackers to use. We're taken through the murky world of international espionage, and shown how we have all become collateral damage in this digital arms race. Schneier also explains that even when we try to protect ourselves by leaving Facebook or Gmail, the fact that our friends and relatives still use them means we're caught up in this global informational dragnet.
Photo of Bruce Schneier by Per Ervland.
Schneier on Security is a personal website. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Resilient Systems, Inc.