Reset the Net: one year after the Snowdon revelations IFLA continues in the fight to end mass surveillance
05 June 2014
Reset the Net
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Today, a group of over 400 organizations and experts, along with 350,000 individuals, continue to rally in support of the 13 International Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance (IPAHRCS) a year to the day after Edward Snowden first revealed how governments are monitoring individuals on a massive scale.
IFLA is a signatory of IPAHRCS. The document spells out how existing human rights law applies to modern digital surveillance and gives civil society groups, industry, lawmakers and observers a benchmark for measuring states' surveillance practices against long-established human rights standards.
Stuart Hamilton, Director of Policy and Advocacy, International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions:
For librarians, safeguarding the privacy of our users is a crucial professional principle. When people are under surveillance, they lose their ability to think freely—nobody likes to read with someone looking over their shoulder. The 13 Principles show us the way to ensure existing human rights law applies to modern digital surveillance. IFLA is proud to be a signatory."
A huge international collection of experts have called on world governments to adopt IPAHRCS, principles aimed at putting an end to the blanket surveillance of innocent persons. The call comes a year to the day after whistleblower Edward Snowden first revealed details about how government spy agencies, including the United States' National Security Agency, are monitoring individuals on a massive and unprecedented scale. In the 12 months since the revelations, most world governments have ignored growing calls from citizens to put an end to this bulk collection.
The 13 International Principles establish clear guidelines to ensure government surveillance activities are consistent with human rights. These principles were developed over months of consultation with technology, privacy, and human rights experts from around the world. The principles emphasize the human rights obligations of governments engaged in communications surveillance.
Group members have been calling for the adoption of new rules to protect innocent citizens from government spying and are also recommending greater use of free software, decentralized architectures, and end-to-end encryption to help safeguard citizens’ privacy rights. They say citizens deserve strong data protection safeguards to protect their privacy from government monitoring.
Read what other international experts are saying about the Necessary and Proportionate Principles and the need to end mass surveillance.