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CNET hosting NSA surveillance event tonight: Join us!

You're invited to a public event tonight in downtown San Francisco that we're co-hosting with the Internet Society to discuss the National Security Agency's bulk surveillance programs.

Join us at CNET's San Francisco headquarters tonight to talk about NSA surveillance and online privacy.
Join us at CNET's San Francisco headquarters tonight to talk about NSA surveillance and online privacy. James Martin/CNET

You're invited to join CNET at our headquarters in downtown San Francisco this evening for a public discussion about the US government's Internet surveillance programs and online privacy.

We're hosting this event in conjunction with the Internet Society and the Internet Society's San Francisco chapter. Doors open at 6 pm Pacific Time. A livestream will be available.

Tonight's co-hosted INET San Francisco event will begin with a discussion about the revelations from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, featuring Alex Abdo, a staff attorney with the National Security Project at the American Civil Liberties Union, and Nate Cardozo, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation's digital civil liberties team.

I'll moderate a followup discussion with Susan Freiwald, a professor at the University of San Francisco School of Law; Matthew Sundquist, a former Facebook privacy team member and co-founder of graph-creating startup; and Paul Brigner, regional director of the Internet Society's North America Bureau.

Michael Snell, president of the Internet Society's San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, contacted the Obama administration in July to ask if they would be interested in sending a representative to tonight's event to defend the NSA surveillance program. They declined to participate.

Documents leaked by Snowden include descriptions of how the NSA has weakened encryption standards, how it has created a "secret backdoor" so phone calls and e-mail message content could be reviewed without a warrant, and how it has worked closely with telecommunication providers such as AT&T and Verizon to tap fiber links. In addition, I've recently reported about techniques the U.S. government uses to coerce Internet companies into cooperating with surveillance demands, attempts to obtain master SSL encryption keys, and government requests for confidential user passwords.

Here are the details:

CNET HQ (CBS Interactive)
235 Second Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 344-2000
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
6:00pm - 8:30pm
(Three blocks from Montgomery Street BART station, eight blocks from Caltrain)