The guy who’s been visioning about stringent data protections, strikes again.
Edward Snowden, a popular whistleblower who was responsible for leaking classified information of the American government’s mass surveillance program on global citizens in 2013. His contribution with The Guardian and other news reporters surprised everyone in the world and realised them of data thefts.
Though in exile, he’s been in constant contact with the world via Twitter and periodical TV shows (video conferencing securely). Just today, he has appeared in the opening ceremony of Web Summit 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal.
In his speech addressing to 20,000 attendees, he termed the big technology companies are running on a “data-hungry” business models where they “abuse” the users collected data. All these big corporations, naming Facebook, Google and Amazon, are amassing personal data of millions, or even billions of people that are easily accessible by governments. This makes all those people vulnerable, he opined.
“These people are engaged in abuse, particularly when you look at Google and Amazon, Facebook and their business model. And yet every bit of it, they argue, is legal. Whether we’re talking about Facebook or the NSA, we have legalized the abuse of the person.” he said.
Unhappy with GDPR too.
While Europe’s General Data Protection Rights (GDPR) is considered to be an optimal law protecting users data, Snowden isn’t even happy about that. He criticized the law’s focus on just protecting the data gathered but being okay on spying!
He called GDPR as just a “Paper Tiger“. Further, he said, “It gives us false assurances. The problem is not data protection. It is data collection. GDPR assumes the data was all collected properly in the first place. It is as if it is okay to spy on everyone, as long as the data never leaks. When it does, it is not data being exploited. It is people.”
Unlike penalising when there’s a data leak, he believes that all such companies has to be penalised every year until they change their methodology.