4 Items

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The Growth of Data Localization Post-Snowden

| July 21, 2014

In the wake of the Edward Snowden intelligence disclosures, governments around the world are increasingly considering enacting so-called “data localization” policies, laws and guidelines which limit the storage, movement, and/or processing of digital data to specific geographies, jurisdictions, and companies. This paper analyzes the complex—and often overlooked—motivations behind the data localization movement, explains how localization policies (in all their various permutations) fail to achieve their stated goals, and highlights some of the many harms localization can cause. Recommendations are provided for U.S. business leaders and policymakers seeking to counter this problematic trend.

Blog Post - Technology and Policy

Keeping the Internet Together through Technical Standards

| Apr. 05, 2013

The Internet is held together as a globally interoperable communications platform through its shared set of technical protocols, message formats, and computer languages, collectively known as "Internet standards." A growing chorus of national governments – including China and Russia – has argued that the organizations and processes that lead to standardization are both outmoded and inequitable. They contend that the current process unfairly favors American firms; that it produces standards with insufficient built-in security; and that it leads to standards that allow for a degree of freedom fundamentally at odds with the social norms of some nonwestern nations.

Blog Post - Technology and Policy

A U.N. Takeover of the Internet: Existential Threat or Tempest in a Teapot?

| Aug. 09, 2012

Experts disagree whether an upcoming meeting of the International Telecommunications Union in Dubai will determine the future of global Internet governance.  On Thursday, May 31, 2012, in the Rayburn Office Building of the House of Representatives, a panel comprising some of America’s leading Internet industry and policy experts offered an ominous warning to U.S. lawmakers about future of the Internet. “The open Internet has never been at higher risk than it is now,” testified Vint Cerf, one of the ‘fathers of the Internet’ and Google’s self-described “Chief Internet Evangelist.

Paper - Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Belfer Center

Internet Fragmentation: Highlighting the Major Technical, Governance and Diplomatic Challenges for U.S. Policy Makers

| May 2012

The Internet is at a crossroads. Today it is generally open, interoperable and unified. Tomorrow, however, we may see an entirely different Internet, one not characterized by openness and global reach, but by restrictions, blockages and cleavages. In order to help ensure that the Internet continues to serve as a source of global integration, democratization, and economic growth, American policymakers must be aware of the most significant technical, political and legal challenges to a unified Internet.