Human rights activists urge Google to stop cloud computing work in Saudi Arabia. They are asking for this until the company can publicly demonstrate how it will mitigate human rights risks.
In December 2020, Google announced an agreement with Saudi Aramco to establish a Google Cloud region in Saudi Arabia. It would offer various Enterprise Cloud services there. Google Cloud Platform is one of the world's largest cloud computing and data storage services.
However, in a joint letter, 39 human rights and digital organizations, including Amnesty International, said the following words. “There are numerous potential human rights risks in establishing a Google Cloud region in Saudi Arabia. These include violations of the rights to privacy and freedom of expression and association, non-discrimination and due process.
Human rights activists urge Google to stop cloud computing work in Saudi Arabia
Rasha Abdul Rahim, director of Amnesty Tech also commented: “Saudi Arabia has a terrible human rights record, including digital surveillance of dissidents. It is an unsafe country to host Google Cloud Platform.
“It is a country where dissidents are arrested, imprisoned for their expression and tortured for their work. Google's plan could give Saudi authorities even greater powers to infiltrate networks and gain access to data on peaceful activists and any individual expressing a dissenting opinion in the Kingdom.
"Google must immediately halt any plans to establish a cloud region in Saudi Arabia until the company can publicly demonstrate how it would prevent potential abuse of its platform."
To address serious human rights concerns related to hosting a Cloud region in Saudi Arabia, the signatory groups ask Google for the following:
- Conduct a robust and comprehensive human rights due diligence process. This should include meaningful consultation with potentially affected groups. They should also publish a result of the findings, including the steps you are taking to mitigate the risks.
- Point out the types of government requests related to cloud regions that you will not comply with because they are inconsistent with human rights standards.
The groups' joint statement read as follows. “Going forward, Google must also prevent or mitigate the risks of adverse human rights impacts. You must clearly communicate the steps you are taking to this end before implementing plans to build cloud regions in other countries where similar risks exist.
Google should also develop benchmarks on where to host cloud services that take human rights responsibilities into account.
Date update on 2021-07-19. Date published on 2021-07-19. Category: Computer class Author: Oscar olg Fuente: cloudmasters