Google chief calls Internet spying threat to freedoms

Google CEO Larry Page holds a press announcement at the company's New York headquarters on May 21, 2012
Google chief Larry Page, pictured here at a press announcement at the company's New York headquarters on May 21, 2012, on Friday branded Internet spying a threat to freedoms and called for governments to be more revealing about what they try to find out about people's online activities.

Google chief Larry Page on Friday branded Internet spying a threat to freedoms and called for governments to be more revealing about what they try to find out about people's online activities.

"We understand that the US and other governments need to take action to protect their citizens' safety—including sometimes by using surveillance," Page said in a blog post.

"But the level of secrecy around the current legal procedures undermines the freedoms we all cherish."

Page put his personal stamp on the California-based 's denial that it opened any doors for US intelligence agencies to mine data from its servers.

Google and other technology firms on Thursday were adamant that they did not knowingly take part in a secret program called PRISM that gave the (NSA) and the FBI back doors into servers at major Internet companies.

"We have not joined any program that would give the US government or any other government direct access to our servers," Page said.

"Indeed, the US government does not have direct access or a 'back door' to the information stored in our data centers," he continued. "We had not heard of a program called PRISM until yesterday."

The program was reportedly set up in 2007 and has grown "exponentially" to the point where it is now the most prolific contributor to President 's Daily Brief, the US leader's top-secret daily intelligence briefing.

Some of the biggest firms in Silicon Valley were involved in the program, including Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, , Apple, PalTalk, AOL, Skype and , reports said.

However, Internet titans contacted by AFP denied providing with back doors to networks and held firm that they only cooperated with legal "front door" requests for information.

"This episode confirms what we have long believed—there needs to be a more transparent approach," Page said.

Google routinely publishes transparency reports listing numbers of requests for user data by governments and how they were handled.


Explore further

Paper: UK government getting US spy agency's data (Update)

© 2013 AFP

Citation: Google chief calls Internet spying threat to freedoms (2013, June 7) retrieved 21 October 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-06-google-chief-internet-spying-threat.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
0 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Jun 07, 2013
To paraphrase Google's Chairman - If you got something to hide, don't use Google.

Jun 07, 2013
Special thanks to both the Right and Left of the political spectrum for giving us the monstrosities that are the Patriot Act, the Department of Homeland Security and the Never Ending War on Terror™.

Jun 08, 2013
One of these pot-kettle-black sort of things. I somehow don't suppose Google would in turn be willing to be open about what they collect and what they do with it?

Why are they so worked up? Maybe the issue is that, unlike ISPs, who have some leeway about how much data they retain about their subscribers, Google has no choice but to retain lots of that sort of information. It's a fundamental part of their business model.

Jun 09, 2013
Considering that Google's CEO has met with and contributed significant amounts of money to Obama, it seems to me that Google is sharing information with Obama about who his political enemies are and what they are up to. If you were a big supporter of Obama wouldn't you want to do this?

It's time to hold Google accountable, by abandoning their services, and use alternative services by those who respect your privacy.

Jun 09, 2013
Who's internet spying? The NAS's or Google's?

Is it the position of Americans that spying for profit is ok, while spying for national security is not?

It seems to be so.

Vacant money grubbers will it seems excuse most corporate crimes as long as they are done for profit.

The uneducated apes say.

Google spying for money: good.

Gubderment spying for national security: The most evil and corrupt thing possible.

Pathetic Morons.


Jun 09, 2013
"It's time to hold Google accountable, by abandoning their services, and use alternative services by those who respect your privacy." - FreeTard

Tard boy thinks that google's data acquisition services are avoidable, and that all he needs do is avoid using google search, or avoid android.

Google tracking is everywhere, and it is all 100 percent legal.

Want to avoid it? Unplug your computer.

Moron.

Jun 09, 2013
Doesn't google work with the Chinese government to help them track down dissidents?

How many people believe that a company that supports Obama would not provide information to help him?

Jun 09, 2013
"Doesn't google work with the Chinese government to help them track down dissidents? " - FreeTard

Nope.

Do you intend to remain a Moron for the rest of your life?

My politics are short and sweet, like the old woman's dance. I am in favor of a national bank; in favor of the internal improvements system and a high protective tariff." - Lincoln


Jun 09, 2013
Who's internet spying? The NAS's or Google's?

Is it the position of Americans that spying for profit is ok, while spying for national security is not?

It seems to be so.

Vacant money grubbers will it seems excuse most corporate crimes as long as they are done for profit.

The uneducated apes say.

Google spying for money: good.

Gubderment spying for national security: The most evil and corrupt thing possible.

Pathetic Morons.



Ahh the " beautiful mind " , sure of its conviction, despite the lack of facts.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more