No Warrantless Searching of Our Emails, Chats, and Browser Data

  • Congress is poised to vote on extending or reforming NSA surveillance powers in the coming weeks, and one issue has risen to the forefront of the fight: backdoor searches. These are searches in which FBI, CIA, and NSA agents search through the communications of Americans collected by the NSA without a warrant. This practice violates the Fourth Amendment. But the government argues that since the NSA originally collected the communications under statutory surveillance powers, the government doesn’t need a warrant to search through them later. This is a “backdoor” around the Constitutional rights that protect our digital communications.

    But we have a chance to shut and lock that backdoor, so that government agents don’t access the communications of Americans without proving probable cause to a judge.

    The USA Liberty Act introduced this month is considered the most viable NSA reform package, and privacy champions on the Hill were able to insert some safeguards against warrantless search into the initial draft. FBI agents who know about a crime and are searching someone’s communications to obtain evidence and build up a case will have to go to a judge and get a warrant before accessing those communications. That’s a good step.

    But it isn’t the full reform we need. That’s because the USA Liberty Act won’t extend the warrant protections to NSA or CIA agents, who we know routinely search this vast database of communications. If the FBI is merely poking around the database trying to look for criminal activity but isn’t investigating a specific crime, they won’t be required to get a warrant. And “foreign intelligence gathering” —a notoriously broad and vague term in the government’s parlance— will also be exempt from this warrant requirement.

    Accessing American communications should require a warrant from a judge. The reform in the USA Liberty Act is an effort to move in that direction, but it leaves a policy that’s open to abuse. Under the current legislative draft, NSA agents can still read emails of Americans and pass “tips” to domestic law enforcement, all without judicial oversight.

    EFF is asking members, friends, and concerned citizens to raise their voices over this issue. Please call your members of Congress and tell them that we won’t tolerate exceptions to our Fourth Amendment rights.

    We have shown many times over the last few years that calls can make a huge difference. And this is the moment: the Judiciary Committee in the House is considering revisions to the bill right now. This is the time to put pressure on the House if we want to see the backdoor search loophole shut.

    Visit to speak out.

    Speak out

    Want to learn more about the reforms proposed in the USA Liberty Act? Read our analysis.

    Related Cases: Wikimedia v. NSAJewel v. NSAFirst Unitarian Church of Los Angeles v. NSA

Tmux Commands

screen and tmux

A comparison of the features (or more-so just a table of notes for accessing some of those features) for GNU screen and BSD-licensed tmux.

The formatting here is simple enough to understand (I would hope). ^ means ctrl+, so ^x is ctrl+x. M- means meta (generally left-alt or escape)+, so M-x is left-alt+x

It should be noted that this is no where near a full feature-set of either group. This - being a cheat-sheet - is just to point out the most very basic features to get you on the road.

Trust the developers and manpage writers more than me. This document is originally from 2009 when tmux was still new - since then both of these programs have had many updates and features added (not all of which have been dutifully noted here).

Action tmux screen
start a new session tmux OR
tmux new OR
tmux new-session
re-attach a detached session tmux attach OR
tmux attach-session
re-attach an attached session (detaching it from elsewhere) tmux attach -d OR
tmux attach-session -d
screen -dr
re-attach an attached session (keeping it attached elsewhere) tmux attach OR
tmux attach-session
screen -x
detach from currently attached session ^b d OR
^b :detach
^a ^d OR
^a :detach
rename-window to newname ^b , <newname> OR
^b :rename-window <newn>
^a A <newname>
list windows ^b w ^a w
list windows in chooseable menu ^a "
go to window # ^b # ^a #
go to last-active window ^b l ^a ^a
go to next window ^b n ^a n
go to previous window ^b p ^a p
see keybindings ^b ? ^a ?
list sessions ^b s OR
tmux ls OR
tmux list-sessions
screen -ls
toggle visual bell ^a ^g
create another window ^b c ^a c
exit current shell/window ^d ^d
split window/pane horizontally ^b " ^a S
split window/pane vertically ^b % ^a |
switch to other pane ^b o ^a <tab>
kill the current pane ^b x OR (logout/^D)
collapse the current pane/split (but leave processes running) ^a X
cycle location of panes ^b ^o
swap current pane with previous ^b {
swap current pane with next ^b }
show time ^b t
show numeric values of panes ^b q
toggle zoom-state of current pane (maximize/return current pane) ^b z
break the current pane out of its window (to form new window) ^b !
re-arrange current panels within same window (different layouts) ^b [space]
Kill the current window (and all panes within) ^b killw [target-window]
  • Use the same script for updating/ upgrading

    Make sure to change the versions to the latest releases:

    #!/bin/bash set -e bpcver=4.2.1 bpcxsver=0.57 rsyncbpcver=

    Scroll through the script, know what you are doing.

    Uncomment the upgrade section(s) and comment out the install section(s)

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  • Again running smartctl after all is said and done:

    smartctl --all /dev/sda

    ddrescue-smartctl-after-rescue.png ddrescue-smartctl-2.png

    Yet an old drive in itself, I run the wheels off of them, and monitor regularly as anyone should.

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