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Scheller College Professor Peter Swire was chosen by President Obama to help review the nation’s intelligence and communications technologies.
Scheller College Professor Peter Swire was chosen by President Obama to help review the nation’s intelligence and communications technologies.

President Obama Selects Tech Professor Peter Swire for Intelligence Review Group

President Barack Obama has selected Georgia Tech Scheller College of Business Professor Peter Swire to serve as part of a high-level group of experts to review the nation’s intelligence and communications technologies.

The five members of this Review Group were chosen for their extensive experience in national security, intelligence, oversight, privacy, and civil liberties.

According to a statement released August 27 after President Obama first met with the group, its members will advise the White House on how “the United States can employ its technical collection capabilities in a way that optimally protects our national security and advances our foreign policy while respecting our commitment to privacy and civil liberties, recognizing our need to maintain the public trust, and reducing the risk of unauthorized disclosure.”

Within 60 days of beginning its work, the Review Group will brief its interim findings to the President through the director of national intelligence and later provide a final report and recommendations to Obama.

Swire, who joined the Scheller College faculty in fall 2013, says: “It is an honor to be asked to serve on the Review Group. I look forward to the hard work of addressing the important issues raised at the intersection of intelligence and communications technology.”

Swire holds the Nancy J. and Lawrence P. Huang Professorship in Law and Ethics as well as joint appointments in the College of Computing and School of Public Policy. Before joining Tech, he was the C. William O’Neill professor of law at Ohio State University.

Swire has been a leader on privacy and cyber-law issues since the rise of the Internet in the 1990s. In 2012, he was named co-chair of the global Do Not Track process for the World Wide Web Consortium. He also is a senior fellow with the Center for American Progress and the Future of Privacy Forum, and a policy fellow with the Center for Democracy and Technology.

Swire has twice served in the White House as a policy official. Under President Bill Clinton, he was the chief counselor for privacy, in the Office of Management and Budget. He is the only person to date to have U.S. government-wide responsibility for privacy policy. 

Under Obama, he served as special assistant to the president for economic policy, working in the National Economic Council. In addition to technology issues, he worked extensively on housing and housing finance issues in that role.

Swire, who is the author of four books and numerous scholarly papers, has served on privacy and security advisory boards for companies including Google, IBM, Intel, and Microsoft.

“We congratulate Professor Swire on being named by President Obama to this important position,” says Scheller College Dean Steve Salbu. “This review of intelligence and communications technology addresses vital issues about how to achieve the goals of businesses, individual users, and governments in our global communications systems.”

The other members of the Review Group include Richard Clarke, Michael Morell, Geoffrey Stone, and Cass Sunstein.



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