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Mark Zuckerberg: US government surveillance is a threat to the internet

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The billionaire CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, criticised US government surveillance in a Facebook post on Thursday, saying it was a “threat” to the internet – and revealed he had called Barack Obama personally to air his concerns.

 

Zuckerberg made his remarks a day after the The Intercept website reported that the NSA has been using automated systems to spread malware over the internet, sometimes using “fake” Facebook servers.

 

“The US government should be the champion for the internet, not a threat,” Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post on Thursday. “They need to be much more transparent about what they’re doing, or otherwise people will believe the worst.”

 

In the post, Zuckerberg said he had called Obama to express his “frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our future” and said he was confused by the government’s actions.

 

“The internet works because most people and companies do the same. We work together to create this secure environment and make our shared space even better for the world,” he wrote.

 

He went on: “This is why I’ve been so confused and frustrated by the repeated reports of the behavior of the US government. When our engineers work tirelessly to improve security, we imagine we’re protecting you against criminals, not our own government.”

 

Though Zuckerberg has been openly critical of government surveillance ,the post had a surprisingly strong tone considering Facebook has long been criticized for its privacy policies.

 

However, Zuckerberg is part of a long list of tech giants who have condemned the extensive government surveillance programs made public by Edward Snowden in the summer of 2013.

 

Companies including Google, Microsoft and Yahoo demanded sweeping changes to surveillance techniques in December.

 

 

Recent revelations about government surveillance activities have shaken the trust of our users, and it is time for the United States government to act to restore the confidence of citizens around the world,” Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said in the December announcement.

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Guest Wednesday, 11 December 2019