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EU dual-use tech ban plan could classify smartphones as weapons

Peter Sayer | July 25, 2016
Smartphones could be caught up in a plan to require licensing of exports of cyber-surveillance tools

The draft regulation requires that exporters obtain authorization for all exports of items listed in the annexes, and also, for certain destinations, of items not listed in the annexes.

Unless smartphones are specifically excluded from the scope of the regulation, this could add significant overheads and delays for exporters of items that many people consider not a weapon but an everyday necessity.

The European Parliament is already in favor of extending export controls to include surveillance tools, having voted in December 2012 to ban the export of technology that could be used for mass surveillance, tracking people's movements, or blocking information.

 

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