Earlier this week, 50 nations and over 150 tech companies pledged to do more to fight criminal activity on the internet including interference in elections and hate speech. The governments and organizations pledged their commitment in the document titled Paris Call for Trust and Security in the Cyberspace.
The representatives of these countries vowed to work together to prevent malicious activities like online censorship and the theft of trade secrets. According to the Associated Press, the document is supported by EU countries, Japan, and Canada, and is also being supported by tech giants including Microsoft, Facebook, and Google.
At the front of the initiative is French President Emmanuel Macron, speaking on the occasion at the Internet Governance Forum organized at the Paris-based U.N. cultural agency UNESCO, he said it’s urgent to better regulate the internet. According to him, Facebook has accepted to let a team of French officials observe the way it monitors and removes hate speech content. He said the goal is to plan elaborate precise, concrete joint proposals about the fight against hate speech and offensive content.
The agreement was put forward as part of Paris Digital Week at the UNESCO Internet Governance Forum. The aim is to have countries commit to cooperating on a wide range of cyber security efforts i.e. preventing malicious online activity; protecting the accessibility and integrity of the internet; preventing election interference; reducing intellectual property violations; preventing the spread of malware and malicious techniques; improving cyber hygiene; stopping “mercenary activities and offensive action by non-state actors”; and strengthening international standards.
Surprisingly USA, Russia and China are not a signatory to the historic document. Pakistan is also not part of the document as a signatory. This comes as a huge concern as in the past Pakistan has come under multiple cyber security threats that have leaked sensitive user information through various social media.
Furthermore, the World Economic Forum has announced that it will join the Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace by President Macron of France. The Forum, through its Centre for Cyber Security, will be joining the Call along with governments, industry and civil society.