Tech Giants Unite To Appeal Against The Reauthorization Of Patriot Act
U.S. technology companies of all sizes, as well as other pressure groups, are rallying behind a call to the government to end mass harvesting of communication data. The companies, and some trade associations, have written to the White House and Congress asking that the Patriot Act not be renewed in its current structure. The companies are essentially asking the government to end spying into the private communications of American people.
Some of the major companies that signed the open letter to President Barack Obama, head of NSA, Admiral Rogers and Congress include; Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL). Others that have also thrown their weight behind calls to changes in government surveillance of the U.S. communication system include Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) and Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR). A lot of other technology providers such as AOL, Evernote and Dropbox are also asking for an end to mass surveillance by the government.
Repealing of Section 215 of Patriot Act
The companies and trade associations are particularly asking that Section 215 of the Patriot Act not be renewed when the law expires in June this year.
The Patriot Act is one of the national security legal formulations that was enacted following the disastrous 9/11 terror attacks in the U.S.
Impact on business
The issue of mass government spying of U.S. communications systems came to the fore following the revelation of the self-exiled former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. In the wake of the Snowden revelations, a number of U.S. companies have been faced with challenging business environments in foreign markets. In China, for instance, the government has limited participation of foreign technology companies in the country’s financial system. As such, the Chinese government is encouraging adoption of local technology in banking and other sectors of the economy.
Safety and privacy
As security becomes a major concern for technology users, companies such as Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) have been trying to encrypt their systems to bolster the safety and privacy of their users. In many ways, security has become one of the major battle fronts for technology companies. Nevertheless, the push to repeal controversial clauses of the Patriot Act is expected to be a win for all in the industry.
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