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Post – Snowden world: a possible “scenario” of the future economy in Europe

It has been almost a year since Edward Snowden found in Russia his new home. At the moment of his dramatical revelations, the world was not ready for that changing.

Marches against American Government were common all across the European Union. Everywhere politicians were astonished by such betrayal. Long-term international relations were cracked.

Today we can ask ourselves ” what is the legacy of Snowden? ”

When the first revelation appeared it was calculated that American economy would have lost 35 billions dollar due to lack of trust in American products and services. No one could have expected that prevision as a good scenario. Currently the USA lost almost 180 billions dollarChina has started to programme its own operating system, Russians prefer to trust their services – Yandex instead of Google, mail.ru in place of Gmail – and Germany wants to create a European silicon valley.

No one relies on American clouds any longer – if you visit an IT trade show you can see the most successful start-up is the one who sell a product that doesn’t save data in the cloud, but in the local server.

Moreover, telecommunication giants are funding encrypting system even when it is not necessary – every system has problems of key protection at any endpoint of a net. That is of maximum importance in order to achieve trustworthiness or appearance of it.

Other scientists evaluate that European companies will spend so much money on security that technology is going to slow down.

It seems we are going to lose two-four years of innovations – especially in the field of so called “home automation”, robotics and IT technology applied to home life – and probably even new jobs.

If we bear in mind those facts, we can easily understand why American secret services want Snowden dead. Every day he spends free and talking, it is a new day of loss for the USA. Nevertheless the legitimate culture of suspect is turning into culture of anti-Americanism. It is becoming hard to distinguish between who just wants his right to privacy with far-left or far-right extremists.

Another feedback to PRIMS and NSA was the reaction of European countries to USA-EU trade agreement. It has been reached deadlock. It seems Germany and France are not longer supporters of it after the leak of informations. German Chancellor Angela Merkel – whose mobile phone was bugged – recently has declined to receive American president Barack Hussein Obama, during his European trip, preferring a dialogue with Russian ambassadors to him.

Conclusions:

The world has change. Internet has changed. A culture of doubt and suspect is spreading out. A government that we considered as our ally – and still it is, as long as we are part of NATO – spied on us, on our companies, on our e-mails. A massive and historical violation of that human right codified in article 8 and 10 of European convention on Human Rights. An infringement of our rights done on a questionable ground of internal security of the USA.

The political aspects should be discussed elsewhere, here we want to ask – What can law do?

Clearly, it is dire a reform of existent international agreement on privacy, personal data and intellectual properties. Because they are no more up-to-date and they proved to be meaningless facing the new challenges.

We need to elaborate a new paradigm to manage with cloud security, provider accountability and cybercrime. We cannot afford as many laws as countries. It would be brilliant, if such discussion took place inside the United Nations, but also bilateral or multilateral treaty could be useful.

Simply we have to do not waste time. Our security and American reliability is at stake.

Last but not least, it would be an actual evidence of good faith the foundation of an international and independent organization that will rule on cyberlaw.

If just one of these proposals is going to be realise, we could say “Thank you, Mr. Snowden”.

 

Useful Links:

http://business.time.com/2013/12/10/nsa-spying-scandal-could-cost-u-s-tech-giants-billions/

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/document/activities/cont/201403/20140307ATT80674/20140307ATT80674EN.pdf

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/23/edward-snowden-nsa-files-timeline

About Riccardo Varisco

Laureando in informatica giuridica presso la facoltà di Giurisprudenza dell'Università Cattolica, sede di Milano. Appassionato di scienze naturali e strategia militare.

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