In this survey of privacy, data protection, surveillance
and freedom of information laws and practices in over fifty countries,
EPIC and Privacy International find that there is strong recognition
of privacy as a fundamental human right.
There is a growing movement towards enacting comprehensive
data protection laws. Adoption of these laws is driven by a desire
to promote electronic commerce, to address past human rights violations,
and to ensure international trade. Many countries have also adopted
Freedom of Information laws.
At the same time, there are frequent abuses of privacy
by both governments and corporations, even in countries with strong
privacy laws. Intelligence and law enforcement agencies, in particular,
are actively opposing legal and technical barriers to surveillance.