June 22, 2017 – 15:22 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net – Alphabet Inc’s Google will press U.S. lawmakers on Thursday, June 22 to update laws on how governments access customer data stored on servers located in other countries, hoping to address a mounting concern for both law enforcement officials and Silicon Valley, Reuters says.
The push comes amid growing legal uncertainty, both in the United States and across the globe, about how technology firms must comply with government requests for foreign-held data. That has raised alarm that criminal and terrorism investigations are being hindered by outdated laws that make the current process for sharing information slow and burdensome.
Kent Walker, Google’s senior vice president and general counsel, will announce the company’s framework during a speech in Washington, D.C., at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank that wields influence in the Trump White House and Republican-controlled Congress.
The speech urges Congress to update a decades-old electronic communications law and follows similar efforts by Microsoft Corp.
Both companies had previously objected in court to U.S. law enforcement efforts to use domestic search warrants for data held overseas because the practice could erode user privacy. But the tech industry and privacy advocates have also admitted the current rules for appropriate cross-border data requests are untenable.
The Mountain View, California-based company calls for allowing countries that commit to baseline privacy, human rights and due process principles to directly request data from U.S. providers without the need to consult the U.S. government as an intermediary. It is intended to be reciprocal.
Countries that do not adhere to the standards, such as an oppressive regime, would not be eligible.
Google did not detail specific baseline principles in its framework.