Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UK government department responsible for protecting and promoting UK interests worldwide.

Digital rights interests include

  • Promoting human rights values worldwide
  • Cybersecurity agreements
  • Export controls

Export controls

The FCO accepted the recommendation of the Foreign Affairs Committee that export controls on censorship technologies be introduced:

The Government welcomes this recommendation. The UK takes its export licensing responsibilities very seriously. The type of equipment referred to by the FAC may of course already be subject to export control, for example if it contains encryption technology as specified in the EU Dual-Use Regulation,under which controlled items may not leave the EU customs territory without an export authorisation. All applications for export licences for this equipment will be assessed on a case-by-case basis against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria. Respect for human rights is already a mandatory criterion for all export licence decisions. The EU has also adopted specific additional measures in the context of sanctions against Iran and Syria. Where this type of equipment is not currently subject to control the Government is committed to working with international partners through the mechanism of the Wassenaar Arrangement in order to agree a specific control list of goods, software and technology. In our view an internationally agreed and implemented list is the most effective and efficient means of controlling exports of concern. Given the evolving nature of these technologies and the very technical nature of these discussions we expect that this work will continue next year.[1]

Contribution to Seoul conference on cyberspace 2013

During the Seoul conference on cyberspace, William Hague MP made a speech calling on the creation of an international consensus for the future governance of the internet.

Shortly after, the Foreign & Commonwealth office published a document on steps to follow the Seoul conference. The document lists a series of major events and conferences in the following areas: Economic Growth and Development; Social and Cultural benefits; Cybersecurity; Cybercrime; International Security; Capacity Building. You can visit their website for access to the publication.

External links