Professor Ron Deibert was interviewed for VICE News by Sarah Berman around International Privacy Day. Deibert spoke about the security challenges governments face in the digital environment. In his view, it’s not surprising or unsettling that Canadian and American spy agencies work together during international conferences like the G20. However, Deibert said that the spy industry has suffered a disturbing “inertia” over the past decade—sucking up hundreds of millions of records on law-abiding citizens along the way.

“Spy agencies—and particularly “signals intelligence agencies” like the NSA or Canada’s own CSEC, of which little is known—have taken a cavalier attitude toward the privacy laws that protect law-abiding citizens. They’re mining third-party servers, routers and apps for data before accountability mechanisms have a chance to catch up. Last week a US oversight panel made a big leap by ruling the NSA’s sweeping metadata collection program is unlawful, and also not that helpful.”

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