Is France about to End Exporting Surveillance Technology?
During a public radio show held in Montpellier (France) on july 20th and hosted by public radio FranceCulture and Le Monde, France's best known and weightiest newspaper, French State Sec. for Digital Economy Fleur Pellerin announced she was opposed to suveillance technology exports to oppressive regimes. This shocking announcement, coming from a country known to be among the world's leaders in mass surveillance technologies, should come as a relief to many living in oppresive regimes.
This shocking announcement, coming from a country known to be among the world's leaders in mass surveillance technologies, should come as a relief to many living in oppresive regimes. Dictatorships like Syria, Barheim, Morocco, Gabon, Cambodgia, or former oppresive regimes like Libya and Tunisia are all equiped with french mass surveillance technologies.
It should also come as a relief for those fighting for privacy rights in France. In october 2011, before France's presidential elections, Reflets.info and Owni.fr revealed that mass surveillance technologies where spying on french citizens. A scandal similar to the American NSA domestic spying gear.
In the United States, surveillance technology firms are currently under heavy fire from the administration. President Obama recently announced an executive order allowing U.S. officials to impose sanctions on foreign nationals found to have used new technologies to help carry out grave human rights abuses.
In France, no need for sanctions, since the french government is a major stakeholder in nearly all current french key players in surveillance gear, such as Alcatel (ALU), Thales (TCFP), Bull (BULL) or Orange (FTE...