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News & Press Releases

May
19
2016
NYCLU Sues NYPD After it Refuses to Disclose Critical Information About Stingrays

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit today against the NYPD after the department refused to reveal important information about its acquisition of Stingrays—controversial surveillance devices that spy on cell phones nearby and that can be used to track location. The lawsuit comes after the NYCLU revealed in February that the NYPD has used Stingrays more than 1,000 times since 2008 in investigations ranging from robbery and drug cases to criminal contempt of court, without a written policy.

May
18
2016
Rochester Police Department Spent Hundreds of Thousands on Stingray Device

The Rochester Police Department has spent at least $200,000 since 2011 to acquire and maintain a Stingray and related equipment. Stingrays are surveillance devices that spy on cell phones nearby and can be used to track location. The information comes from documents released by the department in response to a New York Civil Liberties Union FOIL request sent in June of last year. The documents also show that the devices were purchased, in part with money from state grants, to gather intelligence on gang members.

May
11
2016
NYCLU Sues Ramapo Police Department for Refusing to Disclose Critical Policies

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the Ramapo Police Department today after it refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request seeking basic information about how the controversial department operates. The NYCLU sought policies and data on a variety of policing tactics, such as the use of force, stops and temporary detentions, surveillance technologies and the enforcement of non-criminal offenses.

Apr
29
2016
NYCLU Posts Notice of Raza and Handschu Settlements

UPDATE: U.S. District Judge Charles S. Haight, Jr. has extended the comment period on the proposed Settlement Agreement amending the Modified Handschu Guidelines to 11:59 P.M. on May 26, 2016. He has also added a final in-court hearing date on June 1, 2016. All class members who wish to comment in support or opposition to the proposed Settlement may register to present comments in person on June 1, or may submit written comments without appearing, but must do so by 11:59 P.M. on May 26, 2016.

Mar
15
2016
NYCLU Sues Buffalo Police Department for Refusing to Open its Books

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the Buffalo Police Department last evening after it refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request seeking basic information about how one of the largest police departments in the state functions. The NYCLU sought policies and data on a variety of policing tactics, such as the use of force, stops and temporary detentions, surveillance technologies and the enforcement of non-criminal offenses.

Jan
20
2016
NYCLU: Assemblyman Dinowitz Commits to Introducing a Statewide Digital Privacy Bill

The New York Civil Liberties Union announced today that New York Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz will introduce the New York State Electronic Communication Privacy Act, a bill that will require police to get a warrant before seizing or accessing sensitive information from people’s phones, emails and text messages. The NYCLU’s announcement is one of 17 taking place simultaneously throughout the country, as a bipartisan collection of elected officials introduce digital privacy legislation in states including Illinois, Hawaii, Alabama and New Hampshire.

Jan
7
2016
Landmark Settlement Protects American Muslims From Discriminatory NYPD Surveillance

In a landmark settlement announced today, the New York City Police Department has agreed to reforms designed to protect New York Muslims and others from discriminatory and unjustified surveillance. As a further safeguard, the settlement installs a civilian representative within the NYPD to act as a check on investigations involving political or religious activity. The settlement was reached in two lawsuits, Raza v. City of New York and Handschu v. Special Services Division.

Oct
26
2015
Facebook Has the Right to Protect its Users’ Information from Illegal Searches

The New York Civil Liberties Union is filing a motion for leave to file an amicus brief today urging the New York Court of Appeals to review a lower court’s decision barring Facebook from protecting the privacy of its users against sweeping search warrants issued by the Manhattan district attorney.

Oct
13
2015
NYPD Unlawfully Hiding X-Ray Van Use in City Neighborhoods, NYCLU Argues

The New York Civil Liberties Union is filing a motion for leave to file an amicus brief today, urging the Appellate Division, First Department to uphold a lower court’s decision requiring the NYPD to release information on its use of Z Backscatter Vans, otherwise known as x-ray vans. “People should be informed if military grade x-ray vans are damaging their health with radiation or peering inside their homes or cars,” said NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman. “New Yorkers have a right to protect their health, welfare and privacy.”

Jul
14
2015
ACLU, NYCLU Ask Appeals Court to Halt NSA's Resumption of Bulk Phone Records Collection

The American Civil Liberties Union and the New York Civil Liberties Union today asked the U. S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit to halt the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of Americans’ call records, arguing that immediate action is necessary because the government has resumed surveillance that the appeals court ruled to be illegal.

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