[discuss] Misconceptions about what "US companies" means in respect of data rights of users - and how to protect them

Nick Ashton-Hart nashton at ccianet.org
Tue Jan 14 09:17:34 UTC 2014

Dear Norbert, as to your second point: I know of no country where non-nationals are not 'fair game' for unlimited surveillance by the security services. I hope there are some that I don't know of.

Someone should do some studies on:

1) What proportion of companies in what economies are actually subject to US law due to legal nexus. I'm sure it would be eye-opening

2) What countries actually provide any protections to non-nationals when it comes to national security treatment.

On 14 Jan 2014, at 09:35, Norbert Bollow <nb at bollow.ch> wrote:

> Nick Ashton-Hart <nashton at ccianet.org> wrote:
>> 1) The way US law works, any company - regardless of where it is
>> based or operates - is subject to the US' laws on national security
>> once it has "legal nexus" with the US - which can be created by all
>> kinds of events, but to be simple, even one person employed there in
>> any subsidiary - even one that isn't wholly owned - is good enough.
> Consequently, pretty much all international Internet traffic transits
> infrastructure that is controlled by companies that are (according to
> the perspective of the US legal system, and also in practical reality)
> subject to US law.
> This issue is compounded by the fact that the US legal system does not
> recognize non-US persons as having any fundamental rights in regard to
> privacy, and is conducting massive, massively dangerous global
> surveillance on this basis, especially in relation to information about
> who communicates with whom, which (at least in the context of the
> Internet's current technical architecture) cannot be easily protected
> by technical means that do not introduce significant inconveniences. 
> Greetings,
> Norbert

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