German Cabinet approves eight point programme for privacy protection

The German government has adopted an eight point programme to protect the privacy of its citizens in the wake of revelations about NSA spying on US allies.

The strategy, approved by the German Cabinet this week, was first outlined by Chancellor Angela Merkel under the heading "Germany is a land of freedom" last month.

The first, and most sever step could lead to the repeal of administrative arrangements with the US, UK and France. This would mean those countries intelligence services would no longer be able to investigate email and telecommunications networks from inside Germany.

Other points promote a plan for an EU agreement on data collection as well as a wider EU IT strategy, measures which Germany has been pushing for since the extent of US government spying was revealed by Edward Snowden in June.

A further point covers further discussions with the US, something which appear to have already provided a victory for Merkel; this week the German government said that the US had verbally agreed to enter into a no-spying pact with the European country.

Merkel did however add that people should accept that intelligence agencies do carry out important work in preventing terrorist attacks in Germany and abroad.

A spokesperson for the SPD opposition party criticise the adoption of the eight point programme, arguing that it is full of "inefficiencies" and "bypasses the essence of the matter: to set a clear boundary for the NSA that the mass surveillance of Germans must be stopped."

Image credit: Wikipedia (Aleph)