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Technology / Cybersecurity

Germany seeks European Union support for new charter to protect privacy

Germany has urged fellow European Union countries to support its strategy for a new global online privacy charter, following the call from the country’s data protection regulators to suspend agreement with the US amid concern about surveillance.

Germany’s foreign and justice ministers, in a letter to their counterparts in EU, have sought expanding UN human rights treaty established in 1966 to incorporate modern communication technologies including email, instant messaging and social media, Associated Press reported.

Reports reveal that, the US online spying revealed by National Security Agency (NSA) leaker Edward Snowden have turned out to be an election issue in Germany two months prior to its move to the polls.

"We want to use the current debate to launch an initiative that would outline the inalienable privacy rights under current conditions," the two ministers wrote.

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However, US officials have supported the NSA programmes as essential to prevent terrorist attacks, while German watchdogs allege that the surveillance programmes violated an EU-US treaty aimed at ensuring cross-border data protection.

Snowden also revealed that the US NSA has been working in cahoots with Germany, just similar to most other Western states.

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CBR Staff Writer

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