GISWatch reports: Monitoring ICT for development, democracy and social justice

By Leila Nachawati Rego
Publisher: APCNews     Madrid, 18 December 2014

At APC we support the defence of internet-related human rights at a local, national and regional level. The Global Information Society Watch (GISWatch), developed in partnership with the Humanist Institute for Cooperation with Developing Countries (Hivos), is a key element in this struggle.

GISWatch is an annual report covering the state of the information society from the perspectives of civil society, with a key theme selected for deeper analysis each year.

The 2014 report, devoted to the theme of communications surveillance, was launched at the Internet Governance Forum in Istanbul on 5 September. Between November 2014 and January 2015, launching events are taking place at a local level around the world to promote engagement by different stakeholders. These local launches are being organised in 19 countries as diverse as Uganda, Uruguay, Bulgaria, Nigeria and the Philippines, among others.

While each country has its own specific issues, the reports’ findings show common challenges in the field of surveillance, such as a lack of legislation to protect privacy, the sale of user data by private companies, and the scarce use of encryption technologies.

GISWatch aims to hold governments and international organisations accountable for meeting the commitments they make, by contributing to building a strong and sustainable global civil society policy advocacy network. It also creates a space for collaborative monitoring of implementation of national and international commitments made by governments towards the creation of an inclusive information society.

In the words of Valeria Betancourt, manager of APC’s Communications and Information Policy Programme, “GISWatch is not just a look at topics as relevant as surveillance, but it serves as a platform for diverse actors and civil society organisations to engage in dialogue and advocacy.”

Read GISWatch 2014: Communications surveillance in the digital age, follow GISWatch updates on Facebook and on Twitter through #GISWatch2014, and explore the findings by country:

Argentina

Australia

Bahrain

Bangladesh

Bolivia

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Brazil

Bulgaria

Burundi

Cameroon

Canada

Chile

China

Colombia

Congo, Republic of

Costa Rica

Egypt

Ethiopia

Gambia

Hungary

India

Indonesia

Jamaica

Japan

Jordan

Kenya

Korea, Republic of

Kosovo

Lebanon

Mexico

Nepal

New Zealand

Nigeria

Pakistan

Peru

Philippines

Poland

Romania

Russia

Rwanda

Senegal

Serbia

Slovak Republic

South Africa

Sudan

Switzerland

Syria

Thailand

Tunisia

Turkey

Uganda

United Kingdom

United States of America

Uruguay

Venezuela

Yemen

Zimbabwe



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