Mailyn J. R. Fidler

Professor Mailyn Fidler

Mailyn J. R. Fidler Assistant Professor of Law

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Professor Mailyn Fidler joined the faculty in August 2022, where she is affiliated with the Nebraska Governance & Technology Center. Professor Fidler received her B.A. with Honors in Science, Technology, and Society from Stanford University and her MPhil in International Relations from Oxford University, where she was a Marshall Scholar. After completing a fellowship at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, she received her JD from Yale Law School, where she was a student director for an impact litigation clinic. After law school, she continued her work in impact litigation as the Technology and First Amendment Fellow with the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. She also clerked for The Honorable Robert Bacharach on the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. 

Professor Fidler’s scholarship focuses on the intersection of criminal law, technology, and speech. She is an expert on the Fourth Amendment and changing technology. In broader criminal law, she writes about often overlooked aspects of criminal proceedings, including jury nullification, sentence mitigation, and allocution. Her work also analyzes ways that criminalization intersects with regulation of speech, including on the Internet. She is also an expert on international cybersecurity and cybercrime regulations, with a particular focus on Africa. Outside of criminal law, she also studies the way that legal regimes governing intellectual property, speech, and secrecy intersect. At Nebraska, she teaches criminal law and procedure, cybersecurity, and copyright.


Criminal Law
Substantive criminal law, focusing on the theoretical foundations, general principles and doctrines that govern the rules of liability and defenses, both in the common law tradition and under the Model Penal Code.

Criminal Procedure 631
Survey of the basic issues of criminal procedure with particular emphasis on the fourth, fifth, and sixth amendments to the United States Constitution and their impact on the criminal justice system.

Copyright Law 711/G
A course on the protection of literary, musical, artistic, and audiovisual works under the laws of Copyright and Unfair Competition. Topics include the standards for copyright protection; procedural issues including copyright notice, registration, and duration; rules governing copyright infringement and fair use; and issues arising from digital technologies, including the distribution of copyrighted works over the Internet and the use of technological measures to protect copyrighted works.

Cybersecurity and Sectoral Data Regulation 582
This class provides an introduction to various legal frameworks relating to data- and cybersecurity, such as data breach notification laws, regulatory data security requirements such as contained in HIPAA and GLBA, and the patchwork of statute and common law tools available for addressing cybersecurity concerns. It also prepares students to interact with professionals in other fields relevant to cybersecurity practice, and broader policy discussions about cybersecurity law and policy. This course is available to online LLM students. Pre-requisite: Technology Governance and Regulation: Concepts.


Local Police Surveillance and the Administrative Fourth Amendment  36 SANTA CLARA HIGH TECH. L.J. 481 (2020)

Regulating the Zero-Day Vulnerability Trade: A Preliminary Analysis  11 I/S: J.L. & POL’Y FOR INFO. SOC’Y 405 (2015) (peer-reviewed) (now OHIO STATE TECH. L. J.)



Book Chapters

Facial Recognition Technology in the United States, in FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGIES: LEGAL, SOCIAL, AND POLICY PERSPECTIVES (Cambridge University Press) (forthcoming) (with Gus Hurwitz)

Infrastructure, Law, and Cyber Stability: An African Case Study, in CYBER (IN)STABILITY (Robert Chesney, James Shires, Max Smeets, eds., Edinburgh University Press) (2023) (forthcoming),

Government Acquisition and Use of Zero-Day Software Vulnerabilities, in CYBER INSECURITY: NAVIGATING THE PERILS OF THE NEXT INFORMATION AGE (Trey Herr & Richard Harrison eds.) (2016)


Tech Law as Politics, African Data Protection Laws: Regulation, Practice, and Policy University of Ghana School of Law (Fall 2022)

Rethinking Trade Secret Discovery in Criminal Litigation Works in Progress Intellectual Property Colloquium, St. Louis University School of Law (Winter 2022)

Regional Cybersecurity Laws, Cybersecurity Law and Policy Scholars Conference University of Minnesota Law School (Fall 2021)

Discussant, The Approaches of Non-Western States to International Law and Cyber Operations NATO Cooperative Defense Center of Excellence (Fall 2021)

A Partial Property Rights Theory of the Fourth Amendment Privacy Law Scholars Conference (Spring 2021)

Subaltern Cyber Stability Leiden University (Spring 2021)

Subaltern Cyber Stability Nebraska Governance and Technology Center Workshop (Spring 2021)

Guest lecture, Cyber Threats and Legal Responses, United States Military Academy West Point (Spring 2021)

Guest lecture, Legal Threats to Press Freedom Northwestern Medill School of Journalism (Fall 2020)

Data as Property for the Fourth Amendment University of Nebraska Law & Tech Junior Scholars Workshop (August 2020)

Local Surveillance Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society Cybersecurity Workshop (March 2019)

Local Surveillance Tufts Graduate Student Symposium in Cybersecurity Policy (March 2019)

Panelist at U.K. Foreign Policy in Changed World Conditions House of Lords International Relations Committee Roundtable with Early Career Experts (invitation only) (July 2018)

Panelist at Bipartisan Cybersecurity Policy Workshop U.S. Senate (invitation only) (November 2017)

Invitation-only roundtable participant at “The Vulnerability Equities Process and the Underground Economy" Center for Strategic and International Studies, March 2017

Invitation-only roundtable participant at “MLATs in the Global South RightsCon, March 2017

Interviewed on Mozilla’s “IRL” podcast regarding police surveillance August 2017

Panelist, Government Hacking: Vulnerability Equities Process Stanford Law School (2016)

Co-authored amicus brief for Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and Eight Media Organizations in United States v. Moore-Bush, 36 F.4th 320 (2022)
Co-authored amicus brief for Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Media Law Resource Center in Twitter, Inc. v. Paxton, 26 F.4th 1119 (9th Cir. 2022)
Co-authored amicus brief for Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and 30 News Organizations in hiQ Labs, Inc. v. LinkedIn Corp., 31 F.4th 1180 (2021)
Cited in Amicus Curiae Brief for the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University in NetChoice LLC, et al., v. Attorney General of Florida, et. al., at 13 (11th Cir. Filed Nov. 15, 2021)
Cited in Amici Curiae Brief for Scholars of Constitutional Law, First Amendment Law, and Media Law, United States v. Hale, No. 1:19-cr-00059 at 25 (E.D. Va. filed July 22, 2021)
Cross-Border Data Access Reform: A Primer on the Proposed U.S.-U.K. Agreement, BERKMAN KLEIN CENTER RESEARCH PUBLICATION NO. 2017-7 (2017) (with Tiffany Lin)

“Breaking Down Section 230 and Moderating Content Online,”  Tech Refactored, 9 June 2022

“Put Down that Scanner: Encrypted Police Communications and Civil Liberties,”  Tech Refactored, 3 Sept. 2021

“The New Editors,”  Tech Policy Podcast, 26 Aug. 2021

“Four Obstacles to Local Surveillance Ordinances,”  Lawfare, 4 September 2020 (with Lily Liu),

“African Union Bugged by China: Cyber Espionage as Evidence of Strategic Shifts,”  Net Politics – Council on Foreign Relations, 7 March 2018

“South Africa Introduces Revised Cybercrime Legislation, Acknowledging Criticism.”  Net Politics – Council on Foreign Relations, 7 March, 2017,

“Africans Want Cross-Border Data Access Reform, But They Might Get Left Out.”  Net Politics – Council on Foreign Relations, 26 October 2016,

“Cyber Diplomacy with Africa: Lessons from the African Cybersecurity Convention.”  Net Politics – Council on Foreign Relations, 7 July 2016

“The African Internet Governance Forum: Continued Discomfort with Multistakeholderism.”  Net Politics - Council on Foreign Relations, 20 October 2015

“The African Union Cybersecurity Convention: A Missed Human Rights Opportunity.”  Net Politics - Council on Foreign Relations, 22 June 2015,


BA, with Honors, Stanford University (2014)
MPhil, Oxford University (2016)
JD, Yale Law School (2020)

Areas of Expertise


Assistant Professor of Law, 2022