According to a report issued by the European Parliament the EU should lead by example and ensure technologies made in the EU are not contributing to human rights offences. The report calls for more coherence between the EU’s external actions and internal polices related to Information Communications Technologies in order to guarantee that these technologies are not being used against EU citizens. Technology and access to the internet have created opportunities to document and share human rights abuses, but also systems have been built that are marketed and designed for mass surveillance or hacking into people devices without their consent.
Systems have been created that can pull information out of people's computers, mobile phones, laptops or that can switch on the camera or the microphone and start recording without a person knowing. This is a new and emerging lucrative market, worth billions of Euros, where many European companies have become active. In Europe many countries that were initially very critical about the actions the NSA and the United States have done in the past, such as France, have now adopted laws that can surpass the authority of the intelligence gathering, without the appropriate oversight and has the potential to be very intrusive.
Thought needs to be given as to how appropriate monitoring is and whether it is really necessary. In the UK the introduction of the new terrorism laws has meant that the use of surveillance technology has sky rocketed in a country already labelled "the most CCTV'd place in Europe". The obligation of European states to protect human rights, together with the corporate responsibility to respect human rights as set out in the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, are now widely recognised. It is apparent that more human rights violations will occur resulting from the development and irresponsible sale and export of surveillance technologies which highlights a definite need for more regulation in this growing technology market.