BY TIM JOHNSON firstname.lastname@example.org LINKEDIN GOOGLE+ PINTEREST REDDIT PRINT ORDER REPRINT OF THIS STORY WASHINGTON President Donald Trump has fought to ensure his own freedom from intrusion, acutely aware of what information could prove politically damaging, such as the release of his income tax returns.
But under the rubric of rolling back regulations or enforcing immigration laws, Trump has taken actions that critics say will erode privacy for U.S. citizens, along the country’s borders and in the privacy of their homes.
Among those actions, the administration has:
▪ Increased search and seizure of electronic devices carried by travelers entering the country, both U.S. citizens and foreigners.
▪ Moved to allow broadband providers to profit from the sale of data about the browsing habits of internet users.
▪ Tinkered with language in the 1974 Privacy Act to explicitly deny foreigners visiting the United States protection from surveillance.
The 2016 presidential campaign – during which, U.S. intelligence agencies concur, Russia hacked emails and steered perceptions with fake stories intended to favor Trump and harm opponent Hillary Clinton – only added to the public sense that privacy guarantees have ebbed.
Since the January inauguration, White House leaks and wiretapping allegations have caused more concern, even at the top of the government, where some Trump aides turned to Confide, a communications app with “military grade end-to-end encryption” that quickly deletes old chats.
Erosions of U.S. privacy have caused concern overseas as well.