Google is calling for legal changes that would allow European Union citizens to go to US courts to challenge misuse of their personal data by the US government, according to a Google blog post.
The companyâ€™s support for the extension of the US Privacy Act in Europe joyed by US citizens â€“ who can go to European courts to challenge misuse of their data by European governments. The move follows Edwardâ€™s Snowden revelations of mass surveillance on companies and individuals and refers to the personal data passed to US law enforcement organizations.
Â â€œWe understand that governments have a duty to protect their citizens,â€ Googleâ€™s Chief Legal Officer David Drummond wrote. â€œThe emergence of ISIS and other new threats have reminded us all of the dangers we face. But the balance in the US and many other countries has tipped too far in favour of the state and away from the rights of the individual â€” rights that are enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.â€
The Obama administration also expressed its support for worldwide privacy protection for non-Americans over the past year.
â€œAll persons should be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of their nationality or wherever they might reside, and all persons have legitimate privacy interests in the handling of their personal information,â€ an official White House press release reads. â€œU.S. signals intelligence activities must, therefore, include appropriate safeguards for the personal information of all individuals, regardless of the nationality of the individual to whom the information pertains or where that individual resides.â€