Monthly Archives: March 2023

Surveillance Technologies and Artificial Intelligence within the context of International Human Rights Law

Note | Ramola D | 3/30/2023

Are governments beginning to stand up for humanity today within the context of international human rights law or bringing in surveillance technologies and AI together without recognition of their harms?

A State Department press release today: “Surveillance technologies can be important tools for protecting national security and public safety when used responsibly and in a manner consistent with applicable international law.  At the same time, a growing number of governments misuse surveillance technologies to restrict access to information and the exercise of human rights and fundamental freedoms.  In some cases, governments use these tools in ways that violate or abuse the right to be free from arbitrary or unlawful interference with one’s privacy.  In the worst cases, governments employ such products or services as part of a broad state apparatus of oppression.”

The Summit for Democracy mentioned, live currently, seems to be international in scope and endorses human rights in face of advanced military technology for disclosure of and close attention to which much public discourse and debate is still needed.

EN + ASL | The Summit for Democracy 2023 | Day 2

“Today, the United States is proud to join 44 Summit for Democracy participating states in endorsing new Guiding Principles on Government Use of Surveillance Technologies. These Guiding Principles illustrate how governments can maintain their commitment to respect democratic values and protect human rights in the responsible use of surveillance technology. They were developed by consensus in the Freedom Online Coalition, a group of 36 governments dedicated to protecting the same human rights online as offline, currently chaired by the United States.

The Guiding Principles are intended to prevent the misuse of surveillance technologies by governments to enable human rights abuses in three main areas:

  • The use of Internet controls;
  • Pairing video surveillance with artificial intelligence-driven tools; and
  • The use of big data analytic tools.”
Media Note, US Department of State, 3/30/2023

Questions of human rights abuse, Informed Consent, non-consensual use of people in big data analyses projects, AI use in espionage, law enforcement and military testing operations, neurowarfare, “cognitive warfare” and crowd control technologies–as often examined here, including here and here–as well as others, involving all of humanity, this generation and the next, and all to come, still remain.

Questions of course considered here and in previous conferences and panels at this site quite often:


Guiding Principles on Government Use of Surveillance Technologies:

Also watch the rest of the Summit for Democracy live here at the State Department.