Security & Privacy

Reauthorization of Section 702 - Podcast

International & National Security Law Practice Group Podcast
Adam T. Klein, Kate Martin, Karen J. Lugo July 19, 2017

Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) is up for reauthorization in 2017. An earlier version of the program was instituted after 9/11 by President George W. Bush. In 2007, Congress adopted the Protect America Act and one year later passed the FISA Amendments Act, which included Section 702. Section 702 allows the government to target for surveillance non-U.S. citizens “reasonably believed to be located outside the United States to acquire foreign intelligence information.” The authorization does not extend to non-citizens outside the country to gain information on citizens or permanent residents believed to be residing in the United States.

While proponents of the law argue it is necessary for national security, critics claim that U.S. citizens are too often incidentally swept into surveillance due to the nature of the “targeting procedures” employed by intelligence agencies, and therefore reforms are needed to protect their privacy. Our experts discussed reauthorization, what it would mean if Congress chose not to act, and what kinds of reforms are under consideration.


  • Adam Klein, Senior Fellow, Center for a New American Security
  • Kate Martin, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress 
  • Moderator: Karen Lugo, Founder, Libertas-West Project

Privacy and Freedom of the Press - Event Audio/Video

2017 National Student Symposium
Richard A. Epstein, Irina D. Manta, Jameel Jaffer, Steve Coll, Reena Raggi, Gillian Lester March 15, 2017

The Internet has made information not only much more accessible, it has allowed almost anyone to be a provider of such information. 

This has not been without consequence: the refusal to take down an obscene video led to an eye-popping $140 million jury verdict and the subsequent collapse of Gawker Media. Personal e-mails or national secrets can quickly turn into political ammunition through the amplification of Wikileaks. A wide range of individuals, from Dan Rather to former President Barack Obama, have criticized the spread of misinformation. They claim false information is being dressed up as legitimate online journalism with the intent to deceive and misinform. Technology CEOs have felt the pressure. For example, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is devoting considerable resources to developing methods to regulate speech on his platform— probably the most significant in the world. But, as Zuckerberg himself said, “identifying 'the truth' is complicated." 

This panel will explore this new reality and whether it necessitates new regulation. Will any effort be imprecise, such that protected speech will necessarily be silenced? Does such regulation go against the principles enshrined in the First Amendment?

This panel was presented at the 2017 National Student Symposium on Friday, March 3, 2017, at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York.

Panel 1: Privacy and Freedom of the Press
6:30 p.m. -8:00 p.m.
Jerome Greene Hall 104

  • Prof. Richard Epstein, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of Law, New York University School of Law
  • Prof. Irina Manta, Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Intellectual Property Law, Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University
  • Mr. Jameel Jaffer, Director of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University
  • Prof. Steve Coll, Dean & Henry R. Luce Professor of Journalism, Columbia Journalism School; Staff Writer, The New Yorker
  • Moderator: Hon. Reena Raggi, Circuit Judge, US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • Opening: Dean Gillian Lester, Dean and Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law, Columbia Law School

Columbia Law School
New York, New York

Public-Private Partnerships in Cybersecurity and Technology - Podcast

International & National Security Law Practice Group Podcast
Catherine B. Lotrionte, Adam Segal, Adam R. Pearlman February 28, 2017

The second Teleforum in our Security Partnership Series examined the complex mechanics and ethics of cyber partnerships and many important questions. Should government agencies be enlisting private security firms to help prevent hacking into their own systems? On the other hand, should insurance companies require private company customers to do the same? Should private corporations, particularly financial institutions, be required to report hacking incidents to the federal government, and, if so, to what agency, for what purpose? Consumer protection? Economic security? What are the lawful responses to being hacked for government or industry? Is the best defense a good offense? How effective are today’s consumer-level encryption algorithms? Does public/private cooperation on the cybersecurity front impact private companies’ willingness and ability to cooperate with intelligence investigations under the supervision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court?

As behavior in the cyber domain has perhaps become the most ubiquitous asymmetric threat to modern life, governments, companies, and individuals each have unprecedented exposure to theft and sabotage. Home networks are compromised through connected thermostats; commercial airliners’ flight controls have been hacked through in-flight entertainment systems; passwords and credit card data are stored on servers that are the targets of daily hacking attempts, with that data often appearing for sale online.


  • Prof. Catherine B. Lotrionte, Director of the Institute for Law, Science and Global Security and Visiting Assistant Professor of Government and Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • Adam Segal, Ira A. Lipman Chair, Emerging Technologies & National Security and Director of the Digital & Cyberspace Policy Program, Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)
  • Moderator: Adam Pearlman,Special Advisor to the International and National Security Law Practice Group 


Metadata, Surveillance, and Intelligence Collection in the Trump Administration - Podcast

International & National Security Law Practice Group Podcast
Michael Chertoff January 05, 2017

President-elect Trump has made counterterrorism a focal point of his administration. The disciplined use of metadata, surveillance, intelligence collection, and information sharing is vital to counterterrorism efforts. Drawing on his former experience as a prosecutor, judge, and the second United States Secretary of Homeland Security, the Hon. Michael Chertoff offered guidance on how these tools can be used most effectively to protect against security challenges such as crowd-sourced terrorism and hostile nation states.


  • Hon. Michael Chertoff, Senior Of Counsel, Covington & Burling LLP and Executive Chairman and Co-Founder, The Chertoff Group