Our relationships with our governments are increasingly mediated by technology. Whether we are viewing election advertisements on Facebook, expressing our dissent on Twitter, chatting about our political views or sharing a video on Whatsapp, voting electronically, or attending a protest that is being monitored by cameras equipped with facial recognition software, technology is now infused into the political process.
The seamless way we communicate using some of these technologies has helped many to organise politically and to express dissent online and offline. But the hidden data harvesting on which many of these technologies rely also threatens our ability to challenge power, no matter the type of government.
At Privacy International, we seek to defend democracy and dissent by investigating the role technology plays in facilitating and/or hindering everyone's participation in civic society. As a privacy organisation, we focus on the ways in which governments, political parties, other political actors, and corporations are exploiting our data. We advocate for limits on data exploitation throughout the election cycle. We challenge the ability of police forces and intelligence agencies to monitor us in increasingly intrusive ways. Ultimately, we fight to preserve the privacy, dignity, and autonomy of individuals so that they can exercise and defend their own rights and freedoms.