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Norway Goes Orwellian, Considers Mass Surveillance

Norwegian Intelligence Service has been given the green light for its controversial bid to monitor the contents of all cross-border internet and telephone traffic. According to authorities, the aim of the comprehensive surveillance project is to prevent terrorism and cyber-attacks against Norway


If the surveillance proposal, which earlier this week was given the go-ahead by the defense committee, ends up being endorsed by parliament, the Norwegian Intelligence Service will be able to gain access to telecommunications data and the contents of any data traffic that crosses the Norwegian border, Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten reported. Remarkably, the surveillance is expected to encompass not only suspected criminals, but everyone who uses the Internet. Whereas only targeted surveys have been advised, the monitoring of data in large batches is also possible.

According to defense commission chairman Olav Lysne, the surveillance will be performed automatically. The monitoring is expected to include all information ordinary Norwegians have on their mobile phones and store on overseas data clouds. Additionally, it may even include contacts via social media, since most of the communication is performed via servers abroad. Both unencrypted and encrypted data can be intercepted. So far, the Norwegian Intelligence Service has no plans to collect information about Norwegians living in Norway, which are expected to be spared the surveillance


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