On February 6th, a group of NGOs including the UK's Privacy International won a judgement against Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ). The court that hears complaints about the British intelligence services (IPT) ruled that NSA data sharing to GCHQ was illegal because there was no public legal theory for it. But they also ruled that after the IPT published their summary of the legal theory, GCHQ's collection was legal from December 2014 forward.
It was a win against universal surveillance, but it didn't stop it. Next, the case goes to European Court of Human Rights, or ECHR.
You can help as the case goes forward, and even more importantly, for the first time you can ask a government -- "Was I illegally spied on?"
***YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A UK CITIZEN, ANYONE IN THE WORLD CAN JOIN THIS CASE.***
It's a human rights case, so you just have to be a human.
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Step 1: You Can Learn More About the Case
Or skip this step, and go straight to signing up with the case at the next step.
The TL;DR is that this is a partial victory, and since some of the spying has been ruled illegal, the IPT is required to compel GCHQ to respond to those whom they illegally spied on, and destroy the data they have kept on them.
For my in-depth explanation visit my post on The Message.
Or Privacy International's blog post on the case.
A few points:
1. This is an affirmative process. You have to make the request to find out if you were spied on, no one will notify you.
2. This also goes, as far as we know, for having that data deleted by GCHQ, though it will still be held by the NSA.
3. You DO NOT have to be a UK citizen! This is open to everyone with a phone or email address.
Now, go sign up in Step 2...
Step 2: Go to Privacy International and Make Your Request.
It's time to make your voice heard against universal surveillance!
Go to https://www.privacyinternational.org/?q=illegalspying and fill out this short form. You don't have to use your legal name, use the name you believe you might have been surveilled under. (For instance, I used my byline, Quinn Norton, which is not my legal name.) This will link a name to the email address, which is next. The phone number is optional, but it's one more way you may have been surveiled. If you don't want to link this data, put in multiple requests. (I'll cover that in a later step.) You don't have to join the mailing list, but you must authorize Privacy International to use your data to submit a request on your behalf to the IPT court.
Don't worry about the PI folks. I know them. They're cool. :)
Then, you must confirm that the email you submitted is actually yours. On to Step 3.
Step 3: Confirm Your Email Address.
You'll get an email to the address you put in the form at the Privacy International website. Click on the link to confirm, and you're done! If PI needs more information, they'll mail you at the address you put in.
To put in another email address, you'll want to either clear the cookies from your browser, or use another browser. Replicate the steps above, confirm you information, and you're done!
If you're not sure how to clear the cookies from your browser, https://kb.iu.edu/d/ahic is a quick guide for most browsers.
For more information on the process, and what happens next with your data, as well as what kind of response you are likely to get, visit Privacy International's FAQ on this process: https://www.privacyinternational.org/?q=node/495