Tech giants tagteam and tell spying governments they've gone too far
Every country seems to have been stung by the National Security Agency tapping into our data and correspondences and now, some of the giants from the tech world have all teamed-up to say 'enough is enough' with what is ostensibly an anti-NSA coalition.
Google, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, Twitter, AOL, LinkedIn and Yahoo head-up the Reform Government Surveillance coalition, which was announced late last night.
The group says: "We understand that governments have a duty to protect their citizens, but this summer’s revelations highlighted the urgent need to reform government surveillance practices worldwide."
"The balance in many countries has tipped too far in favour of the state and away from the rights of the individual, rights that are enshrined in our Constitution. This undermines the freedoms we all cherish. It’s time for change."
The aim is to limit the authority of governments to collect our information, protect our privacy and impose more legislative oversight and accountability of organisations like the NSA. The companies combined have taken technological, legal and PR steps to give customers the confidence that personal information is safe.
"The undersigned companies believe that it is time for the world's governments to address the practices and laws regulating government surveillance of individuals and access to their information," the coalition says; "We strongly believe that current laws and practices need to be reformed."
Underscoring the group's sentiment, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Larry Page and Twitter CEO Dick Costolo wrote an open letter to Washington, D.C., in which they "urge the U.S. to take the lead and make reforms that ensure that government surveillance efforts are clearly restricted by law."