Schneier, Diffie, ex-MI5 bod, privacy advocates team up on Code Red

Project will fight intrusive surveillance

Security experts including Bruce Schneier and Whitfield Diffie are teaming up with privacy advocates to form a new privacy group that aims to champion privacy against the growing tide of intrusive government surveillance.

The project, Code Red, is due to begin in January with the aim of becoming a "strategic think tank and campaign clearinghouse to provide new resources and tactical advice to human rights groups across the world". The project reflect concerns that that government surveillance and intrusion has escalated – despite the national security disclosures by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Code Red aims to support whistleblowers as well as human rights groups. Code Red has put together an impressive cast of members on its steering group including Diffie, one of the pioneers of public key cryptography, and influential security expert Schneier as well as Tor developer and Snowden disclosures affiliate Jacob Appelbaum.

The project aims to "build a stronger bridge between the technical and the policy worlds" and will provide "logistics, strategic and resource support for technical initiatives that create direct countermeasures" against surveillance. "The initiative will be committed to a range of objectives, but foremost among these is to mentor the development of new and innovative projects that directly engage the surveillance menace," a blog post by Privacy International founder Simon Davies explains.

Code Red’s steering group includes several influential figures in civil society, among them MI5 whistleblower Annie Machon, former US Congress member and presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney, former Wikimedia General Counsel Mike Godwin, the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s International Rights Director Katitza Rodriguez and the former editor of Index on Censorship Judith Vidal-Hall. ®

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