Peter Fleischer comments:
…. In Europe, it’s become a parlour game to debate and decry US government surveillance programs. By contrast, there’s far less debate or transparency about European government surveillance programs. I can’t even count the number of EU Parliament debates about US government surveillance, but I can’t remember a single meaningful debate in that chamber about EU governments’ surveillance programs. Similarly, media coverage focuses heavily on US government surveillance, and rarely asks hard questions about what other countries are up to, aside from the routine Chinese-hack-a-day stories. And side-lined, the data protection regulators are largely excluded from scrutinizing their own countries’ surveillance programs. One of the few exceptions, Richard Thomas, UK Information Commissioner some years ago, tried valiantly to raise the alarm about the risks of “sleep-walk into a surveillance society“. More typical, when the French CNIL was created four decades ago, it focused almost entirely on French government data collection and privacy, but today, the CNIL has shifted its focus 180 degrees and focuses almost entirely on private sector privacy issues.
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