Privacy SOS

EVENT: Power Wars: Surveillance, Drones and Obama’s Post-9/11 Presidency

When: Friday, Dec 4, 15 | 4:00pm – 5:30pm

Where: MIT, Stata Center Room 32-155 | 32 Vassar Street, Cambridge

Barack Obama campaigned on a promise of change from George W. Bush’s “global war on terror.” Yet from drone strikes and indefinite detention to surveillance and military tribunals, Obama ended up continuing—and in some cases expanding—many policies he inherited. What happened? Based on confidential interviews with more than 150 current and former officials and access to previously unreported documents, The New York Times’ Charlie Savage tells the inside story of how the Obama administration charted its path through ceaseless dilemmas—including its decisions to keep the then-secret National Security Agency program that collected records of every American’s phone calls, raid Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan, and bomb Libya. Savage also pieces together the first comprehensive history of how American surveillance secretly developed over the past 35 years, synthesizing recent revelations and filling in gaps with new reporting.

Moderator: Deborah Hurley, Fellow, Institute for Quantitative Social Science, Harvard University Discussants:

  • Kade Crockford, Director, Technology for Liberty Program, ACLU of Massachusetts
  • Timothy Edgar, Senior Fellow, Watson Institute for International Studies and Public Affairs, Brown University
  • Susan Landau, Professor of Cybersecurity Policy, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Sponsor: MIT Cryptography and Information Security Group

Co-hosts: Data Privacy Lab, Harvard University; Internet Policy Research Initiative, MIT; and Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, Brown University.

Contact: Debbie Lehto,

Learn about upcoming Cryptography and Information Security seminars.

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