[Ed. Note: this is the first in a series of blog posts addressing a range of technology and civil liberties issues we believe America's next President and Congress will have the chance to take a fresh look at, and the opportunity to set a policy course for the Internet that will keep it open, innovative and free.]
One of the biggest mistakes a new administration might make in its first 100 days would be to ignore the impact technology has had on the privacy of our communications and the striking need to update the law accordingly. If the President fails to act early in his first term he will miss a window of opportunity that won't soon reopen, and it will be to the detriment of the Internet economy and to privacy rights.
The next President will have to resolve big-ticket items, like an economic meltdown, an unpopular war and an energy crisis. But when it comes to putting in place policies that will protect and promote Internet commerce, investing in timely solutions now will reap significant dividends for years to come.
The revolutionary growth of digital storage capacity and online communications services means that more and more of our lives are spent online. We send email through web-based services and have growing opportunities to store our calendars, address books and the like with online service providers. Increasingly, sensitive information that used to reside on in our desks, on our desktops or stored on our home computers is shared with or stored by third parties who then convey it to others.
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