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EVENT: In Surveillance We Trust: Government Surveillance Programs and The Challenges To Maintaining Privacy

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The National Security Law Brief’s Fourth Annual Symposium

Thursday, March 28, 2013

9:00 am – 3:00 pm

American University Washington College of Law

4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Room 603

Washington DC 20016

9:00 am            Registration

9:15 am             Welcome Remarks

9:30 am            Surveillance Tools and Programs: Understanding Current Government Practices:

With the increased use of government surveillance tools that do not require warrants, government oversight, or meaningful accountability, it is important to understand exactly type of programs or tools that are being used at the local and federal level. It is also crucial to be aware of what type of information is being collected when considering privacy implications of surveillance programs. This panel will provide an overview of the current known surveillance programs, the types of data collected, and their uses. How has the integration of social media into people’s lives changed the face of surveillance? What privacy safeguards are in place within surveillance programs? How has the use of biometrics, which affects everyone in some way, contributed to encroachment of individual privacy? How and to what extent does the United States share its surveillance data with other nations?


Michelle Richardson, Legislative Counsel, American Civil Liberties Union (Washington Legislative Office)
Lillie Coney, Director, Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
Carlos F. Acosta, Inspector General, Prince Georges County Police Department

Moderator: Sharon Bradford FranklinSenior Counsel, The Constitution Project

11:50 am           Lunch 

1:00 pm            Legal Framework and Challenges to the Law: An Analytical Look at Surveillance Law and Current Court Cases:

A critical part of understanding the scope of government surveillance programs is to analyze the legal framework within which they exist and operate. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) is a primary source of authority, but is not the only law providing the government to conduct surveillance. The Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 was enacted in the interest of protecting the privacy of electronic communications; however, the Act also gave law enforcement the ability to compel service providers to disclose the contents and records of these communications through court orders. This panel will discuss the breadth of these laws, the authority that they provide the government with in its surveillance activities, and whether they are being implemented in a manner that goes beyond preserving national security. The panel will also analyze recent court cases that challenged the constitutionality of these laws, particularly focusing on the upcoming decision in Clapper v. Amnesty International USA, the Supreme Court case that questioned the constitutionality of FISA, and United States v. Applebaum, a Fourth Circuit case challenging court orders compelling information from Twitter during the Wikileaks investigation.


Jamil Jaffer, Republican Chief Counsel and Senior Advisor, United States Senate – Committee on Foreign Relations

Kate A. Martin, Director, Center on National Security Studies

Bradley P. Moss, Esq., Associate Counsel, Law Office of Mark S. Zaid, PC

Moderator: Stephen I. Vladeck, Professor of Law, Washington College of Law

Registration is free but required – please go to www.wcl.american.edu/secle/registration.

CLE Accreditation (4 credits) will be applied for – Cost is $275
For further information, contact: Office of Special Events & Continuing Legal Education, 202.274.4075 or secle@wcl.american.edu.


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