How Private is Your Bank Account?

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By Electronic Frontier Foundation, Cindy Cohn, and Danny O’Brien - Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Financial transactions reveal so much about us: the causes we support, where we go, what we buy, who we spend time with. Somehow, the mass surveillance of financial transactions has been normalized in the United States, despite the fourth amendment protection in the constitution. But it doesn’t have to be that way, as explained by Marta Belcher, a lawyer and activist in the financial privacy world.

Marta offers a deep dive into financial surveillance and censorship. In this episode, you’ll learn about:

  • The concept of the third party doctrine, a court-created idea that law enforcement doesn’t need to get a warrant to access metadata shared with third parties (such as companies that manage communications and banking services);
  • How financial surveillance can have a chilling effect on activist communities, including pro-democracy activists fighting against authoritarian regimes in Hong Kong and elsewhere;
  • How the Bank Secrecy Act means that your bank services are sharing sensitive banking details on customers with the government by default, without any request from law enforcement to prompt it;
  • Why the Bank Secrecy Act as it’s currently interpreted violates the Fourth Amendment;
  • The potential role of blockchain technologies to import some of the privacy-protective features of cash into the digital world;
  • How one recent case missed an opportunity to better protect the data of cryptocurrency users;
  • How financial surveillance is a precursor to financial censorship, in which banking services are restricted for people who haven’t violated the law.

This podcast is supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation's Program in Public Understanding of Science and Technology.

This podcast is licensed Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International, and includes the following music licensed Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported by their creators:

Come Inside by Zep Hurme (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) Unported license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/zep_hurme/59681 Ft: snowflake

Perspectives *** by J.Lang (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) Unported license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/djlang59/60335 Ft: Sackjo22 and Admiral Bob

Kalte Ohren by Alex (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) Unported license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/AlexBeroza/59612 Ft: starfrosch & Jerry Spoon

Warm Vacuum Tube by Admiral Bob (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) Unported license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/admiralbob77/59533 Ft: starfrosch

Drops of H2O ( The Filtered Water Treatment ) by J.Lang (c) copyright 2012 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) Unported license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/djlang59/37792 Ft: Airtone

28 episodes