French court allows mass surveillance inside France, vague on outside borders
Yesterday evening, the French Constitutional Court released its opinion on the “French Patriot Act”, or Projet de loi relatif au renseignement, a law that increases France’s surveillance capabilities, and expands the power of the Executive Branch at the expense of users’ rights to privacy and freedom of expression. While the Court allowed surveillance to continue within France, there may be a silver lining outside its borders, as the text suggests that surveillance by French intelligence in foreign countries is unconstitutional.
Despite opposition, France approves dangerous new surveillance law
Today the French National Assembly approved a dangerous new proposal which would allow intelligence services to violate user privacy and harm freedom of expression. The so-called “French Patriot Act” was first introduced shortly after the killings at the newspaper Charlie Hebdo in January of this year. Sadly, the government used the killings as a pretext to push forward legislation that will give the intelligence services the ability to monitor communications with almost no judicial oversight.
Access Joins Call For Surveillance Reform: Without Changes, Spying Law Must Expire
Today, Access joined a coalition of dozens of civil society organizations, trade associations, and companies demanding an end to bulk surveillance activities conducted by the government under provisions in the USA PATRIOT Act. If sufficient reform cannot be passed, then we must call on Congress to allow these provisions to sunset without any reauthorization.
The last 100 days to pass surveillance reform
As of this past Saturday, there are less than 100 days remaining until certain provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act will expire unless Congress takes action. Now is the time for Congress to pass surveillance reform, and if they cannot, to allow the USA PATRIOT Act articles to sunset.