This issue is critical to all US citizen computer users.
Therefore, I'm posting about it here to bring it to everyone's attention.
From the Electronic Frontier Foundation
"U.S. government agents want to use an obscure procedure to radically expand their use of hacking techniques. We need to stop them.
"The change to Rule 41 would make it easier for U.S. government agents to break into our computers, take data, and use hacking techniques.
"The rule change especially impacts people using privacy-protective technologies, including Tor and VPNs.
"The United States Congress never approved this expansion of the FBI’s powers. But now, Congress is our last chance to stop the change from taking effect."
Please reject the changes to Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure by passing the Stopping Mass Hacking Act (S.2952, H.R.5321). These amendments would lead to a vast expansion of government hacking, a largely unregulated law enforcement technique that makes us all less secure.
Why you should care
"We’ve written a detailed explanation of the changes to Rule 41, which explains why this update will result in a dramatic increase in government hacking. Here’s an overview of some of the main reasons we are concerned:
"Government agents hacking into computers more frequently is a recipe for disaster. Law enforcement will increase their exploitation of security vulnerabilities in common software products, meaning vulnerabilities that could affect millions will be left open instead of patched.
"Law enforcement will forum shop, finding government-friendly magistrate judges to sign off on warrants with a loose connection to the judicial district.
"Law enforcement will pressure judges to sign off on remote searches of thousands of computers with a single warrant—a direct violation of the Fourth Amendment and a pattern we’re already seeing.
"This rule change especially impacts people using privacy protective technologies like Tor or VPNs, which is why we’re asking privacy tools to join us in standing up for users on June 21."
"The proposal comes from the advisory committee on criminal rules for the Judicial Conference of the United States. The amendment [PDF] would update Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, creating a sweeping expansion of law enforcement’s ability to engage in hacking and surveillance. The Supreme Court just passed the proposal to Congress, which has until December 1 to disavow the change or it becomes the rule governing every federal court across the country. This is part of a statutory process through which federal courts may create new procedural rules, after giving public notice and allowing time for comment, under a “rules enabling act.”