LSTS researcher Gertjan Boulet moderated a debate on ‘Privacy versus Security’ organised by Jong VLD Nationaal (the Belgian Young Liberals).
The debate took place on 15 October 2013 at the Faculty of Law of Hasselt University (Belgium). The following panellists presented their views on CCTV, ANPR, Prism, big data and digital profiles in law:
- Raf Jespers, lawyer and author of the book ‘Big Brother in Europa’.
- John De Wit, journalist for the Belgian newspaper De Gazet van Antwerpen.
- Bruno Segers, CEO of Irispact and ex-CEO of Microsoft Belgium/Luxembourg.
- Arnold Roosendaal, researcher on privacy, identity and technology at TNO, and author of the book ‘De informatiefuik’.
For more information (in Dutch), please click here, or visit the Facebook page of the event.
Technology delineates the background of much of the history of both MUSIC & SURVEILLANCE. And at the crossroads of technology, music and surveillance, stands out Léon Theremin.
Léon Theremin was the American name used by Lev Sergeyevich Termen, a Russian inventor who designed the theremin, one of the first electronic musical instruments ever produced. Patented in 1928, the theremin consists of two metal antennas played without any physical contact: the position of the performer’s hands controls the frequency and amplitude of sound. During the 1930s, Theremin lived in the United States and was supported in developing the instrument by early adopters such as Lucie Bigelow Rosen. Since then, the theremin has been used both in avant-garde and popular music, and eventually became especially popular in film and TV soundtracks.
Theremin moved back to the USSR in 1938 in unclear circumstances. After being imprisoned, he was put to work on different secret projects related to surveillance technology. He invented then ‘The Thing’, a seminal covert listening device which allowed to gather audio signals without the need of any power supply, and was used as an espionage tool by the Soviet Union. Due to its use of passive techniques to transmit signals, Theremin’s bug is commonly regarded as a predecessor of nowadays widespread Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, which also allows for the transfer of data from passive, unpowered devices. Text by Gloria González Fuster
picture by lets.book (@flickr)
In the context of the ongoing first Belgian edition of the Semaine de la Pop Philosophie, LSTS researcher Laurent de Sutter will give a lecture titled ‘Métaphysique de la putain’. The event will take place at Passa Porta (Brussels) on 17 October 2013. More information can be found here.
LSTS scholars Rosamunde Van Brakel and Paul de Hert have been quoted in Is predictive policing making Minority Report a reality?, an article by Eugene K. Chow in The Week, for convincingly arguing that the combination of pre-crime police tactics and modern surveillance technology undermines the presumption of innocence.
picture by PHAEDRA Consortium
More than 75 representatives of Data Protection Authorities (DPAs), Privacy Commissioners and Privacy Enforcement Authorities around the world registered for the First PHAEDRA Workshop aimed at improving privacy enforcement co-operation and co-ordination, which took place in Warsaw (Poland) on 24 September 2013.
The workshop was opened by Wojciech Wiewiórowski, Inspector General for Personal Data Protection. The PHAEDRA Consortium presented the results of its efforts so far, and the following panellists presented their views: Ms. Elaine Miller (Directorate-General Justice, European Commission); Mr. Jean-Philippe Walter (Committee of Convention 108, Council of Europe); Mr. Hugh Stevenson (US Federal Trade Commission); Mr. Giovanni Buttarelli, European Data Protection Supervisor); Mr. Blair Stewart (New Zealand Privacy Commissioner’s Office, New Zealand); Mr. Carman Baggeley (Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada); Mr. Rafael García Gozalo (Agencia Española de Protección de Datos) and Mr. David Smith (Information Commissioner’s Office, UK).
picture by ardinnnn (@flickr)
A Special English Edition of Spanish NovATIca journal, titled ‘Privacy and New Technologies‘, is now online. It features two contributions by LSTS researchers: ‘Secrecy Trumps Location: A Short Paper on Establishing the Gravity of Privacy Interferences Posed by Detection Technologies‘ (pdf), by Mathias Vermeulen, and ‘European Data Protection and the Haunting Presence of Privacy‘ (pdf), by Gloria González Fuster and Rocco Bellanova, an article that was finalist in the VII Edition of the yearly NovATIca award.
picture by dfuster74 (@flickr)
The preliminary programme of the 2014 edition of the Computers, Privacy and Data Protection (CPDP) International Conference is now online. The event will take place on 22, 23 and 24 January 2014, in Brussels, under the title ‘Reforming Data Protection: The Global Perspective‘. Registration is already open (here).