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07 June 2013

US security agencies have direct access to non-US-based users’ data on internet services run by companies such as Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Skype, Microsoft, Apple and others, according to a secret document leaked to the Guardian and Washington Post newspapers.

Under the surveillance programme dubbed PRISM, nine US internet companies voluntarily agreed up to six years ago to grant the National Security Agency (NSA) direct access to their systems, allowing them to read emails, messages, internet phone calls and other private data involving non-US-based ‘targets’.

A number of companies have denied to the newspapers that they had knowledge of a warrantless surveillance programme such as PRISM, as civil rights activists have strongly condemned the alleged operation and several US politicians have criticised a lack of transparency in its security services’ powers.

Read more:
- Guardian article
- Washington Post article
- EFF timeline and more background on US surveillance
- Recent blog post on Legally India collating information about surveillance laws in India

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08 May 2013

Snoopers without charter: The government’s “central monitoring system” is set to allow the National Investigation Agency, tax authorities and possibly others to eavesdrop on “every byte of communication” in India, including online chats, phone calls, SMSes and presumably more, reports [Times of India].

Parrot CBI on coals: Slamming attorney general Goolam Vahanvati and additional solicitor general Harin Rawal’s interference in he CBI’s coal scam report, the SC today said: “It's a sordid saga that there are many masters and one parrot” [DNA India]

UPSC ranked: Five NUJS Kolkata grads, two NLIU Bhopal grads and one NLU Jodhpur grad cleared the UPSC civil services mains, the oldest among them having graduated in 2007 [Bar & Bench]

HNLU Androidly: Gyancentral interviews HNLU Raipur alum Apurva Sukant on developing the wristwatch-sized device Androidly that combines all the applications of a smartphone [Gyan Central]

Stewardess v AI sequel: Allegedly overweight Air India flight attendant Salome Singsit approaches Supreme Court against her unfair dismissal through NUJS 2008-batch advocate Ashwarya Sinha (reprising Delhi HC role). SC issues show cause notice to the airline [Firstpost]

Meditating on mediation: Senior advocate Sriram Panchu replies on behalf of the Association of Indian Mediators to senior advocate Gopal Subramanium’s 1 May Hindu article disparaging alternate dispute resolution in comparison to litigation [Hindu]

Atrocious records: Pune district court’s special court for crimes of atrocities against women has received 1,200 cases in the three months since its inception [DNA]

Gaming Haryana: Haryana’s second-highest law officer additional advocate general Manish Bansal, son of railway minister Pawan Bansal, was not only appointed to his present post with less professional experience than is the norm, but also continued to hold director positions in various companies after his appointment [TOI]

How to justify your fees: “When a Client gives an example that some lawyers are charging 15% lesser than you, please tell him that he has not done his research, he can very well find people who are charging 50% lesser” [DK Mahant]

04 May 2012

Shelved The Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association (SCAORA) has requested advocates-on-record (AORs) to blacklist senior counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi on Wednesday, after the politician’s involvement in a “disquieting … incident”.

18 April 2012

imageEveryone’s talking about the cat that accidentally got out of the bag. Private screenings of a video featuring two people are being organised around town.

Reviews have been not been flattering. The video “deserves a PG-13 rating”, says one who saw it. “It’s a bit like a bad Hindi movie which usually shields anything remotely sexual with a flower or some such inane object.”

06 June 2011

image The notification of the Information Technology Rules 2011 in April 2011 include new privacy and online publishing regulations, which could pose significant roadblocks for business operations with restrictive handling of personal data and information and introduction of stringent guidelines for intermediaries and cyber cafes.

22 November 2010

image Trilegal co-founding partner Rahul Matthan has drafted a proposal for the department of personnel training a create an Indian privacy and data protection law that would regulate the storage and disclosure of personal information.