Radical Privacy

The surveillance imposed on us today is worse than in the Soviet Union. We need laws to stop this data being collected in the first place. A radical proposal to keep your personal data safe by Richard Stallman. guardian

There are so many ways to use data to hurt people that the only safe database is the one that was never collected. Thus, instead of the EU’s GDPR approach of mainly regulating how personal data may be used, I propose a law to stop systems from collecting personal data if its basic function can be carried out without that data.

We have already developed a compliant digital payment system: GNU Taler. It is designed to be anonymous for the payer, but payees are always identified. We designed it that way so as not to facilitate tax dodging. All digital payment systems should be required to defend anonymity using this or a similar method.