David Cameron to push Obama to urge tech companies to cooperate with government

Earlier this week, British Prime Minister David Cameron talked about his plan to ban messaging apps that use encryption, because the government wouldn’t be able to access user communications. As we wrote, security experts called the idea “crazy”; among other things, discouraging encryption would open up security holes.

Now, Cameron is reportedly going to urge President Obama to push companies such as Facebook and Twitter to better cooperate with the U.K. government in the name of fighting terrorism.

The Guardian notes that Cameron wants to establish a new legal framework that would compel American tech companies to comply with government demands because he wants to make sure terrorists don’t have “a safe place.”

It’s not hard to guess how Cameron’s push would be received by tech. It comes amid the tech industry’s resistance to anything that might give the impression it doesn’t care about users’ privacy. For example, Michelle Quinn wrote this week that Twitter is fighting the U.S. government over the company’s ability to disclose more information about the national security requests it receives. The tech industry’s campaign for transparency comes after leaks by former government tech contractor Edward Snowden revealed Prism, an NSA spying program that accessed Silicon Valley Internet giants’ user information. Tech companies such as Facebook and Google have denied giving the U.S. government direct access to their users’ data.

Cameron is set to meet with Obama on Friday.

 

Photo of British Prime Minister David Cameron by Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images

 

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