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Anti-Hacking Law’s Limits Lift Legal Uncertainty for Researchers

June 4, 2021, 7:11 PM

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to limit the scope of a federal anti-hacking law is seen as lifting legal uncertainty hanging over researchers who scrape data online.

“It’s been quite uncertain for us to what extent we’re exposing ourselves to legal liability,” said Alan Mislove, a computer science professor at Northeastern University who studies issues like potential discriminatory effects of social media algorithms.

“This decision removes that cloud of uncertainty,” Mislove said of the justices’ Thursday ruling in a case testing the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. The Supreme Court decided that a police officer’s misuse of a law enforcement ...

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