The Chinese government installs software that monitors and censors certain anti- government websites. Journalists and human rights defenders from Bahrain to Morocco have their phones tapped and their emails read by security services. Facebook takes down wall posts after States complain of “subversive material”. Google hands over user data to law enforcement authorities that include IP addresses, location data and records of 5 communications. The US government conducts mass surveillance of foreign phone and internet users.

Each of these acts threatens both an individual’s freedom to express themselves, and their right to maintain a private life and private communications. In this way, privacy and
free expression are two sides of the same coin, each an essential prerequisite to the survival 10 of the other. To freely form and impart one’s political, religious or ethnical beliefs, one needs an autonomous, private space free from interference from the State, private sector or other citizens. Equally, infringements on the right to privacy – physical or online surveillance, monitoring of communications or activities, State intrusion into private, family or home affairs – prevent an individual from exercising their freedom of 15 expression.

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