The U.S. must respect the rights of all users – by Drew Mitnick, Jack Bussell

U.S. extraterritorial surveillance knows few limits. In the past, the U.S. has conducted surveillance on Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, as well as a large percentage of the global population. For the most part these non-U.S. persons, much like those inside the U.S., pose no security threat. However, by virtue of their location and their nationality they are subject to having their most personal information collected and sorted — their conversations, pictures, and desires.These practices constitute discrimination against the global population, pure and simple, and it is time that the U.S. put a stop to them. While respecting the privacy of non-U.S. persons doesn’t capture the attention of U.S. policymakers, the effects of ignoring their privacy rights should alarm them. Take, for example, the effect on business: international trust in U.S. tech firms is slipping. And as a result of government surveillance practices, U.S. companies will lose an estimated $35 billion by 2016.In the long term, addressing this issue will likely require major statutory reforms, resolutions, and potentially even the passage of international treaties. But there are several things that can be done right now to quickly increase the rights afforded to non-U.S. persons, and to demonstrate the U.S. government’s willingness to engage in a dialogue on these important issues.Here are four policy recommendations that would start the U.S. on a course towards respecting the human rights of all people.

via Blog | Access.

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