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Privacy First New Year’s column Looking back on 2016, Privacy First perceives a renewed attack on our democratic constitutional State from within. Incident-driven politics based on the everyday humdrum prevails and the Dutch government’s frenzy efforts to control the masses is relentless, arrogant and driven by industry and political lobbying. The democratic principles of our constitutional State are being lost out of sight ever more while the reversion of legal principles has become commonplace. Every (potential) attack thus becomes an attack on our civil rights. Current constitutional State unable to defend itself Barely a single day has gone past in the current mediacracy and governors without any historical or cultural awareness hand us, our children and our future over to…
The Privacy First Foundation organises networking drinks on a regular basis, inviting a prominent speaker around a topical issue. In September this year we organised a night with the Head of the AIVD, the Dutch Intelligence and Security Service. On 22 October we invited a speaker from the cyber security scene, namely Wil van Gemert, Director of Cyber Security at the NCTV, the National Coordinator for Counterterrorism and Security, part of the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice. Investigative journalist Brenno de Winter was asked to moderate the discussion. Click HERE for the invitation to our network (in Dutch). Would you also like to receive our invitations from now on? Email us! Below is a translated summary of Mr. Van Gemert's speech…
On 22 October 2012 our next networking drink around a topical issue will take place at the Privacy First office in the former building of de Volkskrant newspaper in Amsterdam. As a follow-up to the recent lecture by the Head of the Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service (AIVD) Rob Bertholee, we have invited Wil van Gemert to further expand on the theme of cyber security. Mr. Van Gemert is Director Cyber Security of the NCTV, the National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism and he will prepare a lecture at the interface of security and privacy in cyberspace. What exactly is cyber security and what are the current challenges and problems in this area? What role does the government fulfil…
The Privacy First Foundation regularly organises networking drinks combined with informational sessions for our volunteers, donors and experts from our network of journalists, scientists, jurists and people working in ICT. Since July 2011, these events are organised about every three months and take place at the Privacy First office in the former building of de Volkskrant newspaper in Amsterdam. Themes discussed so far have been privacy in the Netherlands (speaker: Bart de Koning), biometrics (Max Snijder) and profiling by the government (Quirine Eijkman and André Hoogstrate). There were also book presentations by Dimitri Tokmetzis (De digitale schaduw – The digital shadow) and Adriaan Bos (Advocaat van de waarheid – Advocate of the truth). On Thursday night 13 September this year, we had…
As of 2 October 2012, the new Dutch National Human Rights Institute (College voor de Rechten van de Mens, CRM) will open its doors. Recently the Institute under formation established the essential pillars of its policy for the coming years, namely 1) care for the elderly, 2) immigrants and 3) discrimination on the labor market. However, of all human rights, in recent years the right to privacy is worst off in the Netherlands. Contrary to the above mentioned pillars (that concern vulnerable groups of people), the right to privacy appertains to anyone who finds him or herself on Dutch soil. In essence this has turned the entire Dutch population into a vulnerable group, especially in comparison to the situation in…
On June 11, 2012, the long-awaited National Privacy Debate took place in The Hague. Privacy First summarizes the most noteworthy aspects for you, starting with the striking plea (in Dutch) for a Privacy Delta Plan by Brenno de Winter: "The National Privacy Debate is a unique opportunity to start something beautiful and to challenge people into engaging in open discussion. Let us seize this opportunity and work on a Delta Plan. To make the Netherlands a guiding country again. A model for the rule of law as to the protection of the citizen. That's what we are best at!" The floor was then given to Anthony House (Google), who at the end of his keynote speech posed the following question to the audience: “Are the principles…
The following article by Privacy First employee Vincent Böhre was published this month in the periodical De Filosoof (‘The Philosopher’, University of Utrecht). Tomorrow the Dutch Passport Act will be high on the Dutch political agenda: in a debate with the Minister of the Interior Liesbeth Spies the compulsory taking of fingerprints for Dutch passports and ID cards will be discussed. Privacy First has recently (again) emphasized to all political parties in the Dutch House of Representatives to have passports without fingerprints introduced as soon as possible and to make a request to the government to have the Passport Regulation revised at the European level. This in order for the compulsory taking of fingerprints to be done away with also for passports,…
Declaration of endorsement of the Earth Charter by the Privacy First Foundation  « Privacy is the new green »  The Privacy First Foundation hereby endorses the Earth Charter. We subscribe to the ideas and goals of this document and we support the common pursuit of a righteous, sustainable and peaceful world. To that end, the worldwide preservation and promotion of the universal right to privacy is of primary importance. In order to achieve this goal, Privacy First shall be guided by the values and principles of the Earth Charter. Privacy is the basis of our democracy under the rule of law. Without privacy, there can be no free personal development and no free democratic dynamics. Of all human rights, the right to privacy…
With the exception of Great-Britain, of all countries in the European Union the Netherlands is worse off in terms of privacy. This emerges from a large-scale survey by the British organisation Privacy International. In the Netherlands there is endemic surveillance in no less than 10 areas, among which are the biometric passport/ID-card, the exchange of personal data, the storage of communication data, medical and financial information, telephone and internet tapping and border controls. Furthermore, with regard to privacy, in the Netherlands there are no effective constitutional safeguards, insufficient judicial supervision and a lack of political leadership. You can read the entire survey HERE. The findings of Privacy International confirm that a radical change of direction is needed in the Netherlands in the area…

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