Access Now Protests Targeting of RiseUp.net Users in Spain

Spanish law enforcement is claiming that the use RiseUp.net’s secure communication technologies justifies arrests and detainments. Access Now vehemently disagrees. 

Last month, Spanish authorities raided 14 houses and social centers in Barcelona, Sabadell, Manresa, and Madrid, arresting nearly a dozen people.

In addition to other allegations, authorities claim that use of RiseUp.net’s secure and privacy-enhancing communications services is tantamount to terrorism. They have continued to detain seven people.

RiseUp.net is a Seattle-based collective that provides secure email hosting and other services to activists around the world.

“RiseUp.net is a volunteer-run service that supports dissident and human rights communities around the world,” said Josh Levy, Advocacy Director at Access Now. “Using it as an indicator of criminality is disingenuous at best, and at worst an attack on anyone who depends on digital security to operate safely.”

Spain’s criminalization of the use RiseUp.net’s secure tools – and its suggestion that somehow protecting one’s privacy is akin to a terrorist act – is a new low. Access Now rejects this implication, and calls on Spanish authorities to end their campaign of online repression immediately.

“Encryption is a vital technology for all people to maintain their privacy and security,” added Jamie Tomasello, Tech Director at Access Now. “We cannot allow Spain to criminalize the use of basic digital security practices that are relied upon every day by users and corporations alike.”