Police repel protesters in Hong Kong on July 1, 2020. - EPN / Newscom / SIPA
The controversy over the security law in Hong Kong continues to swell, so that the main global technology companies are forced to take a stand. Facebook, Google and Twitter confirmed on Monday that they were no longer responding to requests for information about their users from the Hong Kong government and authorities. The objective, according to these companies, is to maintain respect for freedom of expression.
Unlimited Internet access
Hong Kong has unlimited Internet access unlike mainland China, where these three companies are, for example, blocked. But last week, the Chinese parliament passed Hong Kong's national security legislation, paving the way for radical changes. "We believe that freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and we support the right of people to express themselves without fear for their safety and without fear of other repercussions," said Facebook. The social media giant has also interrupted responses to requests for its WhatsApp messaging.
"Like many organizations, civil society leaders and industry peers, we are seriously concerned about the ongoing developments and the potential of this law," commented Twitter. "We are suspending consideration of government requests for Hong Kong user data pending further assessment of the national security law, including (…) consultations with international human rights experts" , detailed Facebook.
The company created by Mark Zuckerberg recalls that it uses a global procedure to respond to requests from governments to obtain information about users. The review of each request takes into account both internal Facebook policy, local laws and international human rights standards.
Despite international pressure, Beijing tightens its grip on Hong Kong
Security Law Arrests Started in Hong Kong
- Social media
- Freedom of expression
- Hong Kong