NSA surveillance may cause breakup of internet, warn experts

The Guardian reports: The vast scale of online surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden is leading to the breakup of the internet as countries scramble to protect private or commercially sensitive emails and phone records from UK and US security services, according to experts and academics.

They say moves by countries, such as Brazil and Germany, to encourage regional online traffic to be routed locally rather than through the US are likely to be the first steps in a fundamental shift in the way the internet works. The change could potentially hinder economic growth.

“States may have few other options than to follow in Brazil’s path,” said Ian Brown, from the Oxford Internet Institute. “This would be expensive, and likely to reduce the rapid rate of innovation that has driven the development of the internet to date … But if states cannot trust that their citizens’ personal data – as well as sensitive commercial and government information – will not otherwise be swept up in giant surveillance operations, this may be a price they are willing to pay.”

Since the Guardian’s revelations about the scale of state surveillance, Brazil’s government has published ambitious plans to promote Brazilian networking technology, encourage regional internet traffic to be routed locally, and is moving to set up a secure national email service.

In India, it has been reported that government employees are being advised not to use Gmail and last month, Indian diplomatic staff in London were told to use typewriters rather than computers when writing up sensitive documents.

In Germany, privacy commissioners have called for a review of whether Europe’s internet traffic can be kept within the EU – and by implication out of the reach of British and US spies. [Continue reading…]

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1 thought on “NSA surveillance may cause breakup of internet, warn experts

  1. Norman

    All things considered, change had to come, whether by design or whatever. Perhaps the silver lining is all this, the innovation and modernization has been lagging for many years, especially in the U.S. due to the consolidation of the media into just a few hands. After all, why update, when the audience is captive, plus they can charge as much as they want. With new security being designed to block out both hacking as well as any chance of the so called back door, new ways to sent this new internet around the world, it won’t look anything like it does today. Out with the old, in with the new. The paranoia that runs deep in the Government will either die, or destroy it.

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