Greg McNeal Research GrantGreg McNeal, associate professor of law, has received $165,000 from the Carthage Foundation to research the U.S. practice of targeted killings. The research and resulting book will educate policymakers and the public about America’s use of lethal force against suspected terrorists.

Professor McNeal’s research is grounded in the idea that when the United States government kills people on traditional and non-traditional battlefields, bureaucrats play a key role in the killings yet have little visibility into the analytical processes that precede their final decisions. The book will be based on archival and field research and will explain, examine, and offer recommendations for enhancing the success, accountability, and effectiveness of U.S. policies conducted pursuant to America’s new way of warfare.

The research builds upon previous work conducted by Professor McNeal for his article “Targeted Killings and Accountability,” which was featured in the Georgetown Law Journal and won the 2013 Article of the Year award from the American National Section of the International Association of Penal Law. Professor McNeal also recently appeared on MSNBC to discuss the FAA’s selection of civilian drone testing sites in nine states.

Professor McNeal is an expert in international security with an active scholarly agenda focused on national security, warfare, surveillance, and new technologies. Since arriving at Pepperdine, he has twice been called upon to testify before Congress on matters related to national security and frequently consults with elected officials regarding proposed legislation. He recently consulted with and contributed to the development of two U.S. military field manuals aimed at preventing harm to civilians in conflict. He teaches criminal law, criminal procedure, and courses related to national security law and international affairs.

Welcome to the blogosphere Cybersecurity Law and Policy.

A new blog entitled Cybersecurity Law and Policy has just launched, they feature legal news and policy resources for cybersecurity professionals. A necessary addition to the security blog landscape. 


Price Waterhouse Coopers launched an impressive new web video series entitled The Front Line of Fraud & Corruption.  The videos are part of an ongoing series examining how companies can use forensic services to defend against threats, respond to crises, and recover from incidents. While the series is no doubt intended [...]

from Greg McNeal – Forbes

Tagged with:

Originally posted on May 21, 2014 at 04:19PM at Greg McNeal – Forbes,
California Attorney General Kamala Harris issued guidance today for businesses struggling to comply with recent updates to the California Online Privacy Protection Act also known as CalOPPA. CalOPPA’s recent updates require that online privacy notices disclose how a site responds to “Do Not Track” signals, and whether third parties may collect [...]

from Greg McNeal – Forbes

Tagged with:

futureofnationalsecuritylawThe Pepperdine Law Review is pleased to invite you to a symposium on “The Future of National Security Law.” After more than a decade of conflict against al-Qaeda and associated forces, many commentators believe that the separation-of-powers system is under stress; participants in our first panel will discuss the history and the future of separation of powers in the context of national security.

Similarly on the international front, America’s transnational conflict against non-state actors has placed significant strain on international human rights law and the law of armed conflict; our second panel will address whether the existing international regime can effectively regulate modern conflicts. Tying these panels together, John Rizzo, former General Counsel of the Central Intelligence Agency and author of Company Man will deliver the luncheon keynote address.

The symposium will then feature a conversation about whether the post-9/11 Authorization for Use of Military Force should be renewed, that conversation will feature Rosa Brooks, Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center and Benjamin Wittes, Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution.

The final panel of the day will address national security surveillance and the controversy and challenges that have flowed from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden’s leaking of stolen classified documents.

Continue reading »


On February 7, 2014 I will be participating in Loyola Chicago’s National Security and Civil Liberties symposium.  Details appear below.

National Security Law, Policy and Practice:

Are We Safer in 2014 and at What Cost?

The appropriate balance between liberty and security is a legally complicated issue that is both socially and politically charged. In the post-9/11 world of diffused, clandestine, and increasingly powerful and asymmetrical threats from non-state actors, the constitutional equilibrium has shifted, but a new paradigm evades definition in the face of continually shifting threats.  This inaugural symposium hosted by Loyola’s National Security & Civil Rights Program will examine the current state of the constitutional security/liberty equilibrium, including the ongoing developments in the Snowden/NSA revelations; the role of Article III courts; and the economic, political, and moral implications of this debate.  A distinguished group of speakers from around the country will explore these topics and discuss the critical role of lawyers in this process.  



Continue reading »


From the Pepperdine University news story:

McNeal NSA Headquarters

Professor Gregory S. McNeal and eight other experts in national security, technology, and privacy recently attended a series of unprecedented briefings at the headquarters of the National Security Agency in Fort Meade, Md. The briefers included the most senior leaders, technicians, and lawyers in the NSA. During the briefings, participants discussed the law and policy of intelligence gathering, signals intelligence history and process, cybersecurity, the NSA’s relationship with Congress, and the impact of recent media leaks on the NSA. The briefings were off the record, which allowed for a frank and candid discussion about the agency and its tactics. The NSA is one of the world’s most secret intelligence gathering organizations, responsible for conducting electronic surveillance, cryptology, and cyber warfare. Its core missions are to protect U.S. national security systems and to produce foreign signals intelligence information.

Continue reading »

Tagged with:

Professor Gregory McNeal appeared on MSNBC to discuss the FAA’s selection of civilian drone testing sites in nine states.  During the six minute interview McNeal discussed the positive uses of drones, and some of the privacy concerns raised by drone critics.  One of his articles in Forbes was excerpted during the interview and was a central part of the discussion with MSNBC host Craig Melvin.  Professor McNeal has testified before Congress about the integration of civilian drones into U.S. airspace and has written about military drones in an award winning article forthcoming in the Georgetown Law Journal.  His research about military drones is funded by a $175,000 grant and will be published as a book next year.  

Drones and Privacy Panel on C-SPAN

Drones and Privacy Panel on C-SPAN

On C-SPAN, legal experts Gregory McNeal (Pepperdine University) Alan Frazier (University of North Dakota), Ben Gielow (AUVSI), Doug Marshall (New Mexico State University), and Jay Stanley (ACLU) talked about privacy issues related to the use of drones by law enforcement agencies. Topics included pervasive surveillance versus specific uses such as search and rescue operations, the use of drones for commercial purposes, legal protections, and the role of the Federal Aviation Administration.

“Eye in the Sky- A Discussion on UAS Operations and Privacy Implications” was a session of the AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2013, an exposition on unmanned systems and robotics held at the Washington Convention Center.


Investigating Terrorism: Was Boston Preventable?  Is the title of a presentation I will be giving at Arizona State University’s School of Law.  The event will be held in Room 118, a free lunch will be served.  The presentation will include commentary by Mr. John Bruch a 25 year veteran of the FBI.  The flyer is pasted below.

Were the Boston Terrorism Attacks Preventable