CLIP-ings: May 19, 2017

Internet Governance

Wake-Up Call: Congress recently proposed a bill that would require the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) to inform representatives of other government agencies about security holes it finds in software like the recent WannaCry ransomware attacks; in a recent blog post Microsoft called out governments for stockpiling vulnerabilities instead of reporting issues to vendors.


Implied Consent? Google’s AI subsidiary DeepMind was given access to the personal medical records of over 1.6 million National Health Service (NHS) patients in the U.K., but the data sharing agreement between the Royal Free NHS Trust and DeepMind to create a new medical app was found to have been conducted on an “inappropriate legal basis.”

Information Security and Cyberthreats

Makes Us Wanna Cry: Intelligence officials and security experts are pointing to North Korea as the source of WannaCry, the ransomware that affected over 200,000 computers in 150 countries; the ransomware locks people out of their data and demands a ransom.

More Bad News for United: A United Airlines flight attendant mistakenly posted cockpit door access codes, the codes needed to request entry to the flight deck, on a public website.

Sign Here: DocuSign, the owner of eSignature, a digital signature service, said that a database of customer email addresses was breached and used in a phishing campaign.

Intellectual Property

Google It: The Ninth Circuit ruled that “Google” has not become a generic trademark, like “aspirin”, rejecting the claim that the company lost control of its name because of widespread use of “google” as a verb.

The End of the MP3: The research company Fraunhofer IIS that holds the patents on MP3 encoders and decoders announced it had ended the “licensing program for certain mp3 related patents and software”, leading many to believe that MP3 may now be a “dead format.”

Free Expression and Censorship

Bring a Book: The Department of Homeland Security is expected to ban laptops and other large electronic devices from carry-on bags on flights from Europe to the United States.

On the Lighter Side

Bad Date: A man is suing his date for texting while they were watching a showing of the movie Guardians of the Galaxy 2; he is asking for $17.31, the cost of the 3D movie ticket.

Joel R. Reidenberg
Stanley D. and Nikki Waxberg Chair and Professor of Law and Founding Academic Director, CLIP

N. Cameron Russell
Executive Director, Fordham CLIP

Fellow, CLIP
Elizabeth Martin