Merkel targets Facebook in Euro-web privacy push
Chancellor Angela Merkel has backed plans for a “European internet” independent of America and targeted US internet giants Facebook and Google in her push for more privacy.
Merkel mentioned the two US companies in her weekly podcast on Saturday as an example of companies which circumnavigate German data protection laws.
Germany has been rocked by the revelations of former security contractor Edward Snowden, who revealed a mass spying programme by the US National Security Agency (NSA).
By creating a “European internet” all servers and cables would be based in Europe meaning they would be subject to European data protection laws.
“Google or Facebook can naturally go where privacy is at its lowest and we in Europe cannot approve this in the long run,” Merkel said.
The chancellor added she would talk to Hollande about “European providers which offer security for our citizens so that you don’t have to send emails and other information across the Atlantic, but can build up communications networks with Europe too”.
The chancellor will discuss the plans with France’s President Hollande on Wednesday.
Both Germany and the US have pledged to repair ties in the wake of the NSA spying scandal, but hopes of a “no-spy” treaty between the two countries look further than ever from being realized.
Der Spiegel magazine reported in its Monday edition that Germany is planning to ramp up its counterintelligence operations to deal with US spies on German soil.