Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2276103
 


 



Obscured by Clouds or How to Address Governmental Access to Cloud Data from Abroad


Joris Van Hoboken


NYU Law School - Information Law Institute; New York University (NYU) - Information Law Institut

Axel Arnbak


Institute for Information Law (IViR, University of Amsterdam); Harvard University - Berkman Center for Internet & Society

Nico Van Eijk


Institute for Information Law (IViR, University of Amsterdam)

June 9, 2013


Abstract:     
Transnational surveillance is obscured by the cloud. U.S. foreign intelligence law provides a wide and relatively unchecked possibility of access to data from Europeans and other foreigners. The amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in 50 USC 1881a (section 702) are of particular concern. Recent leaks around the PRISM surveillance program of the National Security Agency seem to support that these legal possibilities are used in practice on a large scale.

These developments will affect market conditions and competition, notably for U.S.-based cloud services. In addition, the possibility of foreign governmental access impacts the privacy of cloud end-users and can cause chilling effects with regard to cloud computing use.

Calls for regulatory action and termination of cloud contracts are starting to emerge – such as in cases of medical data storage in electronic patient record systems and biometric data processing in relation to passports in The Netherlands. This Article analyses regulatory solutions to the current status quo on four levels: i) the possibility of limiting surveillance in the U.S. itself; ii) international law as a framework to impose some limitations; iii) the EU General Data Protection Regulation proposals and the EU Cloud Strategy, and iv) improved oversight on transnational intelligence gathering.

If transnational intelligence remains obscured by the cloud, the various promises of the cloud, and electronic communications in general, might stall. It will be hard, but considering all the interests involved in the transition to the cloud, it must be possible to come to some agreement about restrictions on transnational intelligence gathering and stronger protections for non-U.S. persons in U.S. clouds.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 35

Keywords: Cloud Computing, Intelligence Surveillance, Cybersecurity, Privacy

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Date posted: June 10, 2013 ; Last revised: March 29, 2014

Suggested Citation

van Hoboken, Joris and Arnbak, Axel and van Eijk, Nico, Obscured by Clouds or How to Address Governmental Access to Cloud Data from Abroad (June 9, 2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2276103 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2276103

Contact Information

Joris V. J. Van Hoboken
NYU Law School - Information Law Institute ( email )
139 MacDougal Street
WILF Hall, Room 418
New York, NY 10011
United States
New York University (NYU) - Information Law Institut ( email )
40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States
Axel Arnbak (Contact Author)
Institute for Information Law (IViR, University of Amsterdam) ( email )
Kloveniersburgwal 48
Amsterdam, 1012 CX
Netherlands
HOME PAGE: http://www.ivir.nl/staff/arnbak.html
Harvard University - Berkman Center for Internet & Society ( email )
23 Everett Street
Cambridge, MA 012138
United States
Nico Van Eijk
Institute for Information Law (IViR, University of Amsterdam) ( email )
Kloveniersburgwal 48
Amsterdam, 1012 CX
Netherlands
HOME PAGE: http://www.ivir.nl/staff/vaneijk.html
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