Between 26 and 29 September, the annual Freedom not Fear (FNF) conference and barcamp will take place in Brussels. Privacy advocates will tackle surveillance, censorship, net discrimination. Simon Davies, publisher of the Privacy Surgeon and co-founder of Privacy International, will present the first global analysis of the impact of the Snowden revelations and Paul Nemitz, Director at DG Justice of the European Commission, will discuss the data protection reform and the future of the EU-US umbrella and Safe Harbor agreements.
The ninth Internet Governance Forum (IGF) was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on 2-5 September. Alternative Informatics Association (AIA) submitted four proposals to the IGF, but all of them were rejected. As a result, AIA decided to organise a parallel event, the Internet Ungovernance Forum (IUF). The IUF attracted considerable interest among Internet researchers and activists who wished to address urgent issues, such as censorship and surveillance, in a more inclusive manner.
The UK government brought in emergency legislation, a Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill (DRIP), to not only declare data retention to be still lawful but also expand the scope of both retention and lawful intercept in a number of ways.
For example, the UK government has awarded itself the extra-territorial power to demand assistance with surveillance of UK persons from foreign companies that provide communications services to people in Britain. This means that the UK security and intelligence services can demand that Google UK wiretap someone associated with Britain, rather than filing an application via the relevant mutual legal assistance treaty.
Drawing on international law and jurisprudence, the Principles articulate the obligations of governments under international human rights law in the digital age. The Principles are a product of a collaborative effort of privacy experts, human rights lawyers and civil society groups. They provide a tool to evaluate and help reform governments’ surveillance practices. The Principles were first launched in the Palais des Nations in Geneva on 20 September 2013.
Tor (The Onion Router) is an anonymity network that directs Internet traffic through a worldwide volunteer network that consists of relays, known as nodes, concealing the location and usage details of users, to protect their privacy. It is used for example by journalists and political activists to guarantee the confidentiality of their communications, but can also be used by criminals to hide their tracks from law enforcement.
Between 15th-19th of September, in the week leading up the first year anniversary of the 13 Necessary and Proportionate Principles, EDRi, the EFF and the coalition behind the Principles will be conducting a Week of Action explaining some of the key guiding principles for surveillance law reform.