2020 Webinars

Below, you can find the Fourth Amendment Center's webinars from 2020.

Surveilled Without a Trace: Challenging Digital Evidence Obtained through RoundUp and Torrential Downpour in Criminal Cases

Prosecutors are employing novel and unproven surveillance software to investigate peer-to-peer file-sharing networks for criminal activity, seeking to link suspicious activity with internet IP addresses and subscriber information. The software suite, known as “RoundUp,” includes applications designed to monitor popular file-sharing platforms such as BitTorrent (e.g., “Torrential Downpour”) to conduct highly-intrusive digital surveillance. How can defense lawyers recognize the use of RoundUp or similar programs in a criminal case?

This webinar from August 11, 2020 featured Mohammad Hamoudi, Assistant Federal Defender for the Western District of Washington, Jeff Fischbach, founder and President of SecondWave Information Systems, and Robert Herz, the owner of the Law Offices of Robert Herz, P.C.

Policing the Police: Using Police Technologies to Uncover Law Enforcement Misconduct in Criminal Cases

Since 2017, the Baltimore Public Defender’s Office has called over 2,000 convictions into question related to police misconduct. In one instance, a Baltimore Police Department body-worn camera appeared to show an officer planting drugs at the scene of an arrest. As law enforcement agencies are increasingly using surveillance tools and forensic technologies to identify and arrest suspects in criminal investigations, defense attorneys are faced with the challenge of both defending their clients and holding police accountable for misconduct and abuse. How can criminal defense attorneys turn police technologies on police departments in criminal proceedings? 

This webinar from August 11, 2020 featured Debbie Levi, Director of Special Litigation with the Baltimore City Public Defender, and Ivan Bates, Managing Partner of Bates & Garcia, P.C.

Likes, Posts and Shares: When the Government Uses Social Media to Prosecute Your Client

Earlier this summer, an investigation in The Intercept found that the artificial intelligence startup Dataminr was helping law enforcement digitally surveil Black Lives Matter protests across the country, by monitoring social media posts and collecting geolocation data on protesters. This follows a history of police departments and federal agencies using social media monitoring tools and tactics to gather massive amounts of information on individuals, groups, and activities, designating people as terrorists and gang members based on their activity. How can defense attorneys challenge the use of social media evidence in criminal cases, as courts continue to grapple with the constitutionality and scope of the Stored Communications Act?

This webinar from August 6, 2020 featured Hanni Fakhoury, an Assistant Federal Public Defender in Oakland, CA, and Rachel Levinson-Waldman, deputy director of the Brennan Center’s Liberty & National Security Program.

(Mis)identified: The Challenges of Identifying and Litigating Facial Recognition Technology in Criminal Cases

Police departments, federal agencies, and technology companies across the country are seeing revived scrutiny of facial recognition technology, which is capable of identifying people, sometimes without their knowledge or consent. Research has repeatedly demonstrated that some facial recognition systems perform differently depending on race and gender, and the use of such technology is not always disclosed to the defense when used to identify a suspect in a criminal case. How can defense lawyers identify a facial recognition case, and why is facial recognition technology so difficult to challenge in court?

The program from July 23, 2020 featured Clare Garvie, Senior Associate with the Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law, Phil Mayor, Senior Staff Attorney with the ACLU of Michigan, and Dr. Arun Ross, the John and Eva Cillag Endowed Chair in the College of Engineering and a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Michigan State University.

Protecting Privilege in a Pandemic: Tools for Securing Your Documents and Communications While Working Remotely

Criminal defense attorneys are navigating unprecedented legal challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. From securing your files and folders to safer channels to communicate with your clients and your team, this webinar guides you through the best digital safety and security practices as you continue to advocate for your clients.

This webinar from May 15, 2020 featured hacker Matt Mitchell. Matt currently works to assist civil society groups in issues around cybersecurity.

Deploying Surveillance for Public Health: Examining the Practical Limits and Privacy Risks of Technical Systems to Combat the Pandemic

With an increasing number of governments and private corporations proposing the use of technological surveillance systems to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, experts have warned that tech-assisted contact-tracing and location tracking systems can pose significant risks to privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties. This CLE webinar discussed the practical limits and privacy considerations of these systems, with a focus on risks and concerns to criminal defendants.

This webinar from May 13, 2020 featured Catherine Crump, Assistant Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Samuelson Law, Technology & Public Policy Clinic at UC Berkeley, School of Law, and Daniel Kahn Gillmor, Senior Staff Technologist for the ACLU's Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project.

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