The tech industry, and the world at large, is still reeling from the explosive revelations made public by infamous whistleblower Edward Snowden. In a recent interview, prominent venture capitalist Marc Andreessen claims that many tech industry leaders are fuming not only over the scandal, but at the Obama administration’s refusal to scale back its surveillance programs.
CEOs from several tech and media industry heavyweights, including Google, Facebook and Netflix, have held numerous meetings with senior government representatives in recent months. But according to Andreessen, the meetings did not get tech industry leaders on the same page with the government, as was originally hoped.
During the interview, Andreessen said, “The level of trust in U.S. companies has been seriously damaged, especially but not exclusively outside the U.S.” According to some industry analysts, the exposure of the National Security Agency’s activities has hit the tech industry hard, with some estimates suggesting the revelations have triggered tens of billions of dollars in revenue losses.
This past January, the Obama administration went public with a package of proposed reforms to government surveillance practices. Under the proposal, the NSA would require an order from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to mine data and other information from American cellular telephone records. Both civil liberties and consumer protection organizations were not convinced the proposed reforms would have the desired impact.
For an iPhone app development company, planning for a future tech landscape that includes government surveillance may be the wisest move. Most industry analysts believe that the NSA’s electronic spying activities will only increase as the number of mobile platforms and Internet-connected devices expands in the years ahead.
Chicago iPhone application developers should also take note that the NSA is known to collect data on users through their smartphone apps. Building in safeguards against unauthorized surveillance could be a way to appeal to users with privacy concerns.Tags: edward snowden, facebook, Google, government intrusion, marc andreeson, netflix, nsa, nsa spying, nsa surveillance, obama spying