Author Archives: Jonathan

ConComms joins 195 organizations signing Security For All letter

ConComms joins 195 organizations in signing open letter to the leaders of the world’s governments:

We encourage you to support the safety and security of users, companies, and governments by strengthening the integrity of communications and systems. In doing so, governments should reject laws, policies, or other mandates or practices, including secret agreements with companies, that limit access to or undermine encryption and other secure communications tools and technologies.

  • Governments should not ban or otherwise limit user access to encryption in any form or otherwise prohibit the implementation or use of encryption by grade or type;
  • Governments should not mandate the design or implementation of “backdoors” or vulnerabilities into tools, technologies, or services;
  • Governments should not require that tools, technologies, or services are designed or developed to allow for third-party access to unencrypted data or encryption keys;
  • Governments should not seek to weaken or undermine encryption standards or intentionally influence the establishment of encryption standards except to promote a higher level of information security. No government should mandate insecure encryption algorithms, standards, tools, or technologies; and
  • Governments should not, either by private or public agreement, compel or pressure an entity to engage in activity that is inconsistent with the above tenets.

National Academy Of Continuing Legal Education features ConComms CLE

“Ethics and Technology: Recent Developments and Potential Risks That NO Lawyer Can Ignore” featured in National Acadamy Of Legal Education Program

ConComms CLE featured in National Academy Of Legal Education

Attorneys in practice today are being faced with a myriad of IT security and privacy issues. Therefore it is more imperative than ever for attorneys to understand recent technological developments and the risks associated with them, including their widely acknowledged duty to stay conversant with technology in order to represent their clients adequately and assure confidentiality of client data and privileged communications.

Indeed there is on-going debate about how far the ethics rules should or should not go in mandating specifics steps, such as encryption, to ensure the protection of client data, including recent ethics opinions or comments by bar associations around the country.

A panel of ethicists and technical experts will lead the discussion that no New York attorney can afford to miss, especially sole practitioners, small and mid-sized firm members who typically do not have in-house technical resources to rely on.

The National Academy of Continuing Legal Education is a provider of accredited continuing legal education courses throughout the United States. From its inception, the Academy has been firmly committed to addressing the needs of attorneys and has positioned itself as a leading provider of cost-effective and time-efficient continuing legal education courses. In addition to live seminars, NACLE provides full course credit via Website/Online, DVD, Audio CD and CD-ROM depending on the respective state.

ConComms CLE featured in National Academy Of Legal Education

Encryption for Lawyers at Civic Hall

Encryption for Lawyers (ConComms presentation)

Location: 156 5th ave, 2nd fl. Workshop Room, NY, NY

8:30am – 9:30am EST

February 8, 2016

In the wake of the Snowden revelations, many in the legal profession have grown concerned about the ramifications of surveillance and encryption. Law and discourse about the legality of encryption are rapidly evolving. But encryption and privacy also have day-to-day implications for attorney-client privilege. What do lawyers need to do in order to maintain client confidentiality?

Join Gus Andrews with guests Harlo Holmes from Freedom of the Press Foundation and Jonathan Stribling-Uss from Constitutional Communications for a brief breakfast presentation and discussion about best practices in digital privacy and law. Talk with other lawyers about their experiences using secure technology within their firms.

RSVP here
Key Words: Crypto Law

The NSA v. Lawyers

Lawyers, the NSA, and Mass Surveillance: Constitutional Communications at NYCLA

Recent Developments and Potential Risks that NO Lawyer Should Ignore: Part of an accredited Continuing Legal Education (CLE) class at the NYCLA bar with Constitutional Communications and others. A detailed presentation showing the ethical compromises and insecurity facing unencrypted attorney-client information. The full program can be accessed for the cost of a CLE at


NY Magazine on ConComms Event at Mayday Space

Protect Your Awkward Selfies From Big Brother at This Skill Share in Bushwick

By Kavitha Surana

Reposted from:

An anti-surveillance skill share is happening at Mayday

Ever heard of a yottabyte? It’s 1,000 times the size of the internet and the amount of data the U.S. government can hold in its Utah Data Center, Jonathan Stribling-Uss, the director of Constitutional Communications, tells me.

If you haven’t seen Citizenfour yet or read any of Glenn Greenwald‘s stuff, here’s a newsflash: The U.S. government is keeping track of all your online and phone interactions, 24/7, picking up every last awkward text message to a crush or drunk phone call you’d rather forget. (Not to mention the hackers who are getting ever better at infiltrating your system.)

If you’re not into handing all your privacy to big brother, head to this beginner anti-surveillance skill share at the activist community center Mayday in Bushwick at 3 PM on Saturday, where Stribling-Uss will teach you the latest on cyber-security and data protection.

Stribling-Uss first learned to encrypt messages after he was deported from China in 2008 for taking part in a demonstration to support Tibet. Thanks to secure texting and calling tools, his group had managed to avoid surveillance and unfurl Tibetan flags at the Beijing Olympics.

“We wouldn’t have been able to communicate without that,” he said. “In China, they monitor all the networks.” At the time, he didn’t know the U.S. was using the same methods to surveil, both internationally and at home.

Now his organization trains lawyers, journalists, non-profits and movements like Black Lives Matter, to ensure that their communications systems are protected from both the government and hackers.

This Saturday, show up to Mayday with a laptop and USB drive (suggested donation is $10-$20) and he’ll teach you a primer on the anti-surveillance toolkit: onion routers, Tor, OTR (Off The Record Chat) and PGP email servers (Pretty Good Privacy). You’ll leave with “the world’s most secure operating system” and a bundle of security tools.

Aren’t sure if you should be concerned? Who cares about the awkward selfies you send your friends? Think again. Stribling-Uss says a well-known organization was hacked for ransom in the middle of a training he was giving. “It’s way more common than we are made to believe because no one goes public,” he said.

And don’t be scared off by those onion routers. Hiding data trails is already common practice in many areas of our lives, like the work place (office passes) or home (garage door openers). “People think of this stuff as very arcane and the word ‘encrypt’ is very weird and complicated,” Stribling-Uss said. “There are very concrete steps that individuals and groups can do to have a very high degree of security and privacy from most hacking and mass surveillance.”

Still got an appetite for more? Why not check out this Bushwick/Bed Stuy cop watch training open house after you’re done updating your system. It’s taking place at The Base community organization at 7 PM.

CLE on Ethics and Technology

Constitutional Communications Director Jonathan Stribling-Uss is teaching this CLE Attorney Education Course tonight.  Hope to see you there!
Learn About Recent Developments and Potential Risks of Ethics and Technology –
What No Lawyer Can Afford to Ignore
Wednesday, October 28, 2015, 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM
3 NY Credits: 3 Ethics ::  3 NJ Credits: 3 Ethics
Transitional & Non-Transitional
Attorneys in practice today are being faced with a myriad of IT security and privacy issues. Therefore it is more imperative than ever for attorneys to understand recent technological developments and the risks associated with them, including their widely acknowledged duty to stay conversant with technology in order to represent their clients adequately and assure confidentiality of client data and privileged communications.

A panel of ethicists and technical experts will lead the discussion that no New York attorney can afford to miss, especially sole practitioners, small and mid-sized firm members who typically do not have in-house technical resources to rely on.

Program Co-sponsors: NYCLA’s Ethics Committee and NYCLA’s Cyberlaw Committee

Fulfilling Your Ethical Obligations CLE



Fulfilling Your Ethical Obligations: Learn What You Need to Know About The New Technology to Avoid Ethical Violations And Security Risks

Event Link on NYCLA page:

Credits: 3 NJ Credits: 3 Ethics
3 NY Credits: 3 Ethics; Transitional and Non-transitional

Course Description:

Lawyers and technology have had an uneasy relationship. Although some lawyers are early adapters, others feel that technology is not important to the practice of law. But this attitude is no longer harmless conservatism. Avoiding the new technology may lead to violations of lawyers’ ethical duties of competence and confidentiality.

The pervasiveness of electronic data  in all aspects of commercial and personal life and its easy transmission through the Internet have not only fundamentally altered the manner in which lawyers interact with clients and with one another, but potentially expose confidential and proprietary information to rapid and unauthorized dissemination. Although lawyers may have been comforted by ethical opinions finding their casual use of unencrypted e-mail or social media and nonuse of cloud computing appropriate in the past, they can no longer rely on those opinions given the dramatically altered security risks of today.

Join us for the second program in our  ongoing series which will identify and help you learn and put into practice the new technology. Only then can you effectively and competently use e-mail, the Internet, social media and cloud computing.  Our tech savvy panel will take you on a tour through the new technologies. We will discuss how the internet, email, cloud and social media work in simple terms, that even non-technical practitioners, will understand.

You will also learn “hands-on” how to:

  • Install and use free “email” encryption tools
  • Choose and use secure “cloud storage” for documents
  • Proper use of “social media” for lawyers


Faculty: Joseph Bambara, UCNY, Co-Chair, NYCLA’s Law and Technology Committee; James B. Kobak, Jr., General Counsel, Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP; Pery Krinsky, Krinsky, PLLC; Peter Micek, Access Now; Jonathan Stribling-Uss, Constitutional Communications


Emerging Issues in Cybersecurity, Legal Ethics, and Technology


Emerging Issues in Cybersecurity, Legal Ethics, and Technology

Tuesday, March 17, 2015 | 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Room 3/114
CUNY School of Law
2 Court Square
Long Island City, NY 11101

Note: Online registration will close at 4:30pm, 3/17/2015.

A tipping point has been reached on the issues of legal ethics, secure communications, and data security. From criminal defense attorneys representing domestic clients, to transactional attorneys engaged in trade negotiations, all practice areas are impacted by the new political and technological reality of multi-state mass surveillance technology. This CLE will assist attorneys in understanding how to ethically engage with information technology in this new and challenging climate.

The course will be facilitated by Jonathan Stribling-Uss (’12) and is co-sponsored by The Constitutional Communications Project and the Bertha Justice Institute at the Center for Constitutional Rights.

This two-credit course will offer 1.5 Professional Practice credits and 0.5 Ethics & Professionalism credit.

Course sign-in will begin at 6:00PM and the program will begin promptly at 6:30PM.

Please note registration is required for all CLE programs.

CLE Credits provided by Community Legal Resource Network at CUNY School of Law


CLE credit will be offered only to those attorneys completing entire sessions; attorneys attending only part of a session are not eligible for partial credit. Attorneys arriving late are welcome to attend the program but will not be eligible for credit. Attorneys wishing to receive CLE credit must sign in the program’s attendance register prior to and following the CLE program; once a speaker begins the program, the sign-in sheets will be removed. Similarly, attorneys leaving the session early are also ineligible for CLE credit.

Financial Aid Requests

To request financial aid, please first email John-Paul Kocot at Do not register on this page. Financial aid details and registration instructions will be sent to you.

Cancellation Policy

CUNY School of Law reserves the right to cancel a program at any time. If CUNY School of Law cancels a program, you will receive a full refund.

Refund Policy

Full refunds are available, less a $5 processing fee, up to 48 hours before the program date. Requests for refunds must be made via email to John-Paul Kocot at

Refund requests made less than 48 hours before the program date will be refunded at 50% less a $5.00 processing fee.

No refund will be available if you cancel on the program date, if you do not show up, or if you leave a program early for any reason. No refund will be available if you attend a program and are dissatisfied with its presentation or content.

If you do not cancel and do not attend the program, a complete set of materials will be forwarded to you in consideration of the registration fee.

Bertha Foundation

Center for Constitutional Rights