back to article Who will save Europe's privacy from the NSA? Oh God ... it's Google

A Google lawyer says Europeans spied on by the NSA should get the same rights as Americans – such as the right to sue the US government for privacy invasions. David Drummond, chief legal officer for the information-harvesting monster (Google), published a blog post on Wednesday titled "It’s time to extend the US Privacy Act to …

  1. BillG

    Don't Make Me Laugh

    "It’s time to extend the US Privacy Act to EU citizens..."

    " it can be as big a failure here as it is there."

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Re: Don't Make Me Laugh

      Oh no.

      Keep your laws on your own Shores, USA,

      Lets just fine the USA and USA companies for breaking OUR laws here.

      I don't want a "New World Order" World Government run by USA. They have too much influence. An absolutely pernicious argument by Google given that USA is ultimately run for and by Big Business.

      1. Oninoshiko

        Re: Don't Make Me Laugh

        "Lets just fine the USA and USA companies for breaking OUR laws here."

        Hahahahaha! Oh wait, you're serious. Let me laugh even harder. Bwahahahahahahaha!

        You can implement whatever fines you want, and the US will just ignore them, just like the EU member nations will ignore fines the US where to issue against them, and don't get me started on the fines PRK would come up with, if they could get away with it.

        1. Trigonoceps occipitalis

          Re: Don't Make Me Laugh

          "just like the EU member nations will ignore fines the US where to issue"

          Cough, UK Banks, cough.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      Re: Don't Make Me Laugh

      We already have the data protection act and the NSA have tapped servers and data centers on European soil, so theoretically the EU could charge and prosecute the NSA under existing EU law.

      Good luck getting those NSA bods extradited from the USA to stand trial though.

  2. Brian Miller

    Google is the best hope? Aw, sh...

    "Google has more information on the people of the planet and more influence on the people of the planet than all of the governments combined." -- Andrew Greig, founder and CEO of Vizzeco.

    He likens Google to the Borg. Actually, it sounds like the Borg and the dark side of the Force. "Don't be evil." Uh huh.

    1. Indolent Wretch

      Re: Google is the best hope? Aw, sh...

      And why is anything he says important?

      Have you seen their website?

  3. Anonymous Coward

    More public relations...

    Unfortunately, privacy protections in the U.S. are dangerously watered down, so I am not so sure of the actual utility of Google's suggestion.

    1. Mark 85

      Re: More public relations...

      I think you hit it.. NSA is supposed to look for threats, CIA can only look outside the US borders. FBI, inside the borders. I'm nto sure where or how the other 5-eyes fit into this as I'm not sure what their charters are. Given that way the data is being slurped is convoluted, such that the Brits hit us, we hit them, and then the data is swapped and now Google jumps in is a bit OTT, IMO. I'm not sure what kind of data sharing is going on with other countries as those haven't been revealed as far as I know.

      So Google, the ultimate privacy slurper wants to make a deal methinks. Maybe they'll be the outsource resource for the US three-letters and then extend influence to other countries?

  4. Pseu Donyme

    No thanks

    How about respecting the sovereignty of other (friendly) nations though?

  5. Gannon (J.) Dick

    No Lawyer or Politician needed

    "It’s time to extend the US Privacy Act to EU citizens."

    Trivia I can't seem to forget: In the US, perhaps in Europe as well, the laws generally refer to "citizens". The exception is FOIA (Freedom of Information Act). It specifically applies to "persons", and of course this can be a proxy meatbag for any organization.

    Save yourselves.

    The simple fact is that the right to question the NSA is one of those rights Tom Jefferson famously called "inalienable" in the US Declaration of Independence. To be honest I have never seen the word anywhere else. He may have invented it, but the EU can borrow it (as long as you translate into 30 languages).

    1. Mark 85

      Re: No Lawyer or Politician needed

      It's probably too late to save ourselves. The EU shouldn't follow us but they may. Sadly, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution have been perverted way beyond what Mr. Jefferson (and friends) wrote in those documents. I'm sure that a tachometer should be placed in this grave and also a microphone. The tach to record the speed at which he's spinning and the microphone so we can hear him protest the way things have been twisted.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Gannon (J.) Dick

        Re: No Lawyer or Politician needed

        Wow. Way to miss the point, which is "inalienable", not "the people" who are native born (mostly) perhaps subject to jail but not subject to deportation (or "transportation", are you Australian ? or Napolean ? St. Helena, or French ? Devil's Island).

        Somewhere between the Magna Carta and the Declaration of Independence Captain Kidd was dragged back to London for hanging.

        Stop reading the words. Think the thoughts.

  6. Christoph

    Not much point

    The entire raw data of the last census was handed over to the NSA. We don't have much privacy left for them to violate.

  7. Medixstiff

    This legislation would mean SFA in the grand scheme of things, I expect when a European tries to take the US to court, they would just get a gag order and told to pay the court costs, you unclean peasant.

    Plus if M$ already has data centres in Europe, as per the recent court case in the US where they told the judge to take a leap, it can't be too much harder to make sure the EU traffic goes to the EU data centres.

  8. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Nice one, Jennifer Baker. Google and their ilk caught in flagrante delicto with AI's Horny Dilemma*

    Granting EU citizens limited rights they they are unlikely to ever exercise would be a small price for the administration compared to keeping billion-dollar companies with US interests happy.
    ..... Nail head meets hammer for some rumpy pumpy with blank [redacted] black kettles and dark web honeyed pots.

    And what smells particularly and peculiarly fragrant for the likes of a .... SMARTR Searching Engine ...... and is an abiding enigmatic conundrum and present future source of constant unknown self-destructive difficulty for all oppressive exclusive and repressive executive systems of societal surveillance for Mightier Man Management, is the fact that when virtually entangled with the more intelligent of the species and superb virtual machines which enjoy and experiment with experience in the Greater Singularities which Deliver and Support Grand Masterly Purpose and Fantastic Play with AI and Political Command and Remote Virtually Anonymous and Autonomous Control of the Great Universal Game with Global Operating Devices, are they default future source supply engines for Intelligence Led Operations for New Nation Phormations with New More Orderly Virtual Machine World Order Programming. ROTM ...... Fact born[e] of fiction or fiction born[e] of fact? Practically Real or Virtually Not?

    *Devil of a Choice in a Heavenly Mission :-) but a simple no brainer and with easy decisions well made when forging paths which driver and when doing no evil is real and the cosmic heavy fuel.

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