GNI is concerned about a worldwide trend towards government laws and policies which pressure ICT companies to intercept communications, share user data, and restrict content and service access in ways that may threaten internationally recognized rights to freedom of expression and privacy. Below you can find more work done by both GNI members and outside experts that further document this trend.
Reporting with the CLFR Framework Included in the CLFR Country Set
The methodology used in the CLFR reports was originally adopted by Telenor and Vodafone working in partnership with Hogan Lovells International LLP in an advisory role. Both companies’ original reports, which are included in the CLFR, are available here:
- “Legal Annex: Overview of Legal Powers,” the third update to Vodafone’s Law Enforcement Disclosure Statement (published May 2017).
- The Telenor “Authority Request for Access to Electronics Communications Report — Legal Overview” (published March 2017 — also including information on cybercrime legislation).
Transparency Reporting by Other Company Members
GNI-member companies have taken different approaches to inform the public on the main laws, regulations, and standards that affect their users’ communications:
- BT’s Privacy and Free Expression Report includes a detailed overview of the legal environment for telecommunications companies operating in the UK, as well as information on legal authorities for lawful interception, data retention, data disclosure, and web blocking in 20 countries where they do business.
- Millicom’s annual Law Enforcement Disclosure (LED) Report provides a regional overview of legal trends underpinning the statistics they report for lawful interception, access to metadata, and access to users’ mobile financial services data. Millicom also commissioned a number of the CLFR reports included on this website.
- Telia Company’s Law Enforcement Disclosure Report (statistics updated biennially) includes an appendix outlining the legal frameworks for signals intelligence, real-time access (without requests), and data retention for law enforcement in the company’s markets.
- Telefónica’s annual “Report on Transparency in Communications” cites the specific laws granting authorities for lawful interception, access to metadata, content filtering and blocking, and geographical or temporary suspension of service in each of their markets alongside statistics in each category.
Other Legal Resources Pertaining to Freedom of Expression and Privacy in the ICT sector
- Freedom House’s annual Freedom on the Net Report, featuring in-depth country reports and analysis of global trends for online freedom.
- The Cyber-rights Research Initiative and Localized Legal Almanac (the Cyrilla Collaborative), a global initiative aggregating, organizing, and visualizing distributed legal data through open research methodologies, data models, taxonomies, and databases.
- The Stanford Center for Internet and Society’s World Intermediary Liability Map, covering evolving regulation shaping Intermediary Liability and Internet users’ rights worldwide.
- The Legislative Observatory on Freedom of Expression, which provides an overview of Internet-related laws and proposed legislation throughout Latin America, as well as analysis of the corresponding impacts on freedom of expression based on regional human rights instruments. The resource is maintained by the Center for Studies on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information (CELE) at the University of Palermo, an academic member of GNI.
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