INCLO’s recent information rights activism has centered on defending our human rights in our digital and online spaces. Governments across the globe surveil and collect people’s digital communications. Private companies also harvest and share our personal data. This often occurs without our knowledge or consent.
It is clear that domestic legislation is slow to respond to the technological advancements permitting privacy encroachments. Legal loopholes, together with poor oversight and public disclosure, allow for the violation of our fundamental rights including our right to privacy and freedom of expression. Journalists, civil societies, and vulnerable and marginal populations are at particular risk of interference.
Against this background, INCLO has striven to defend information rights challenges relating to privacy in the digital age. At global and local levels, we seek to protect and enhance digital privacy, freedom and access from undue interferences from governments and private actors alike.
Our goals are:
- Practical. We work to promote encryption use and digital privacy education for civil societies, NGOs and the public;
- Reform based. We push for higher standards of information and privacy rights protection at the legal and policy level through litigation, grassroots activism, and policy lobbying;
- Global. We work with treaty bodies, regional organisms, and local governments and agencies to push for the highest standards of information rights and privacy protections.
Despite the uproar over Snowden’s revelations of vast and secretive networks seriously affecting our individual freedoms, there is still no permitted public access to agreements governing intelligence sharing anywhere in the world. INCLO members formed a multinational coalition asking governments to release information regarding agreements between the intelligence agencies of their countries. Our report shows the results of our requests, together with desk research and intelligence agency interviews about INCLO country legislation and oversight.
INCLO sent an open letter to Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Apple asking them to publicly condemn the internet crackdown in the country, as precipitated by the Moscow court ban on the encrypted messaging service Telegram LLP. All members voiced their concern for the threat to the right to privacy and freedom of expression in Russia.
Led by Liberty UK, six INCLO members argued before the European Court of Human Rights that cross-border programmes deployed by UK government agencies to intercept international communications content and data are unlawful. The decision is pending shortly.