World / Europe

MEPs urge EU to protect citizens from mass surveillance

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-10-14 20:26

BRUSSLES -- Certain Members of European Parliament (MEPs) pressed the European Commission to immediately come up with alternatives to its "safe harbor" policy regarding personal privacy, following a ruling by the European Court of Justice.

"Too little has been done to ensure that citizens' rights are protected following revelations of electronic mass surveillance," said civil liberties MEPs in a resolution passed on Tuesday.

They also expressed concern about surveillance laws in several European Union (EU) countries, including in France, the UK and the Netherlands.

"The European Parliament's inquiry into the revelations by Edward Snowden of electronic mass surveillance was the most comprehensive investigation completed to date. Not only did the report call for an immediate end to indiscriminate mass surveillance practices by intelligence services both in the EU and the U.S., but it also set out a roadmap for further action in this area," said Claude Moraes, the civil liberties committee chair and rapporteur on mass surveillance.

Moraes said that on the the heels of the inquiry, "there is widespread agreement that something has gone wrong with the way that intelligence agencies and others have acted. Work needs to continue to ensure that civil liberties are defended on the Internet too," added Moraes.

The resolution called for a European strategy for greater IT independence to increase EU IT security and online privacy. It likewise stressed the need to ensure meaningful democratic oversight of intelligence activities and to rebuild trust with the United States.

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