Privacy and the Internet — a reading list

Posted on December 7th, 2018 by in Privacy deep dives.


For anyone interested in learning more about privacy, data, and the Internet, this reading list is a good place to start.

The articles, books, and reports that we present on this list cover various aspects of how cybersecurity, the right to privacy, and the Internet interact. They are all recommended by our team, and we’ve arranged them in order from the easiest to digest to the most complex.

“Privacy is Power”
Frederike Kaltheuner
In Politico Europe; May 27, 2018
This op-ed came out just after the EU implemented the General Data Protection Regulation. Kaltheuner, who is the head of Privacy International’s data exploitation program, clearly has given the issue of online privacy deep thought. This article deftly summarizes why individuals should stand up for their right to privacy — and what they have to lose if they don’t. She states her argument eloquently: “Privacy was once misconstrued as being about hiding and secrecy. Now it’s understood to be something much more pressing: power dynamics between the individual, the state, and the market.”

Carry On
Bruce Schneier
Wiley, 2013
Schneier is a security expert of the modern age, and his book is the quintessential primer on privacy and international surveillance. Carry On gives intriguing insight into the inherent security vulnerabilities that need to be addressed as society is woven into the Internet. As a collection of short essays, the book is an excellent introduction for anybody who would like to learn more about Internet privacy and surveillance on a global scale.

Privacy and Big Data
Terence Craig and Mary E. Ludloff
O’Reilly Media, 2011
Although Privacy and Big Data is a quick read, it adds perspective to the privacy discourse at hand in Europe and North America. Craig and Ludloff approach the book with an intersectional methodology, drawing on philosophy, privacy policy, and international affairs to assemble a well-written overview of the situation.

Nothing to Hide
Daniel J. Solove
Yale University Press, 2013
Nothing to Hide is a must-read for those who want to explore the battle between privacy and security. Solove investigates all facets of modern surveillance efforts and disassembles the assumptions and arguments used to fuel the government surveillance apparatus. With his unique insight into the national security debate, Solove’s book does a great job of explaining the threats to privacy posed by intrusive government surveillance.

Defending Politically Vulnerable Organizations Online
Sean Brooks
CLTC White Paper Series, 2018
This is an academic paper that requires at least a basic knowledge of cybersecurity. That being said, the questions this white paper examines are more pressing than ever. As more of civil society, and life in general, migrates online, how can relatively small organizations secure themselves against state surveillance agencies, hacker collectives, and private-sector spyware companies? This paper examines the challenges civil society organizations face and lists the support resources that they can use to continue their work online.

We hope you find this list a useful resource. Share your favorite articles, books, and reports about cybersecurity, data privacy, and the Internet with us on Twitter or Reddit.

Best Regards,
The Proton VPN Team

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Prior to joining Proton, Richie spent several years working on tech solutions in the developing world. He joined the Proton team to advance the rights of online privacy and freedom.

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