ORG parliamentary and policy update/2014-w35

< ORG parliamentary and policy update

Top Stories:

This is ORG's Parliamentary and Policy Update for the week beginning 25/08/2014

If you are reading this online, you can also subscribe to the email version.

Official Meetings

There have been no official meetings this week.

NSA and GCHQ updates

See our full list of the Guardian and Snowden’s revelations.

Nearly 24 US government agencies had access to NSA surveillance data through Google-like search engine

New documents examined by The Intercept, show that the NSA built a 'Google' like system that allowed nearly 24 US government agencies to search and share 850 billion records on phone calls, emails, cellphone location and internet chats.

The search engine called ICREACH, apart from containing tons of foreigner's information, also contains what appears to be at this stage, information on millions of Americans. Under US law, the collection of American's data must comply with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act under the authority of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA court) (The Intercept).

Consultations and departments

A full list of open consultations and Parliamentary events can be found on our Events

Bank of England publishes discussion paper on availability of UK credit data

The Bank of England has published a discussion paper titled "Should the availability of UK credit data be improved?" The main aim of the paper is to discuss the availability of information in the commercial credit market.

It's available online in PDF form.

International Developments

Australia and Indonesia sign 'no-spying' pact

Following revelations in November 2013 that Australian intelligence services spied on Indonesia's president, his wife and colleagues, the two countries have signed a 'Joint Understanding of a Code of Conduct' which says:

1. The Parties will not use any of their intelligence, including surveillance capacities, or other sources, in ways that would harm the interests of the Parties.
2. The Parties will promote intelligence cooperation between relevant institutions and agencies in accordance with their respective national laws and regulations (The Register).

European Union

EU regulation on e Identification and trust services for electronic transactions published

The European Parliament, on Thursday published the details of a regulation passed in late July 2014. One of the Regulation's aims is to harmonise the use of e-identification among member states and enhance the trust in electronic transactions within the internal market (

It says "In most cases citizens cannot use their electronic identification to authenticate themselves in another Member State because the national electronic identification schemes in their country are not recognised in other Member States. That electronic barrier excludes service providers from enjoying the full benefits of the internal market."

The full text is available online.

Commercial Stakeholders

Lawsuit against Facebook gathers 60,000 users and makes procedural win

An Austrian privacy activist is suing Facebook under a number of claims which include allegations that the company aided the NSA to collect the personal data of their users.

60,000 users have signed on to support the case which is claiming €500 in damages for each of the 1.32bn active users.

The lawsuit has passed its first review by Vienna's Regional Court, meaning that Facebook must now prepare their response (Reuters).

ORG Media coverage

See ORG Press Coverage for full details.

ORG contact details

Staff page