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Technology / Software

French human rights groups file lawsuit against US surveillance programme

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the French Human Rights League (LDH) have filed a lawsuit in Paris against the US National Security Agency’s (NSA) Prism surveillance programme.

The complaint was filed against unknown person in relation to the facts revealed by Edward Snowden, former NSA employee.

Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Paltalk, Facebook, YouTube, Skype, AOL and Apple have also been named in the lawsuit.

The complaint was filed on the basis of articles which refer to ‘fraudulent access to an automated data processing system, collection of personal data by fraudulent means, wilful violation of the intimacy of the private life and the use and conservation of recordings and documents obtained through such means.’

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FIDH and LDH said Prism, which tracks half a billion communications per month, seeks to use keywords to discover not only the origin of a private message but also to identify its intended recipient and its content, irrespective of the technical means used to transmit the message.

The rights groups said: This blatant intrusion into individuals’ lives represents a serious threat to individual liberties and, if not stopped, may lead to the end of the rule of law."

FIDH and LDH asked the French justice to open a judicial investigation into the matter.

FIDH has also urged concerned states to accept Snowden’s asylum application and condemned the US’ approach towards whistleblowers.

Earlier this month, the European Parliament said it will conduct an in-depth inquiry into the US surveillance programmes, including the bugging of EU premises and other spying allegations.
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CBR Staff Writer

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