SURFnet also fears NSA

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The plan of Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX, the main internet hub in the Netherlands) to start a branch in the United States, is not supported by SURFnet, one of its main users.The members of AMS-IX vote today on the proposal of the management to open an establishment in the United States. Some fear it may open the door for U.S. secret services such as the NSA.

SURFnet provides Internet communication between universities, colleges, teaching hospitals and other scientific institutions. In an email to fellow members SURFnet explains that it is against the plan, partly because there are concerns about the eavesdropping capabilities of Americans.

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If data are collected under U.S. law, foreign users only enjoy a very limited protection, since constitutional guarantees do not apply to them, argues SURFnet.

More and more experts are speaking out against the plan of AMS-IX. Professor Bart Jacobs of Radboud University calls it incomprehensible that our own critical Internet Exchange AMS-IX wants to open a branch in the USA.

He goes on to say that AMS-IX would voluntarily submit itself to the Patriot Act, which would give the U.S. authorities the means to enforce access to our internet traffic.

In light of the growing legal extremism in the U.S. and recent revelations, XS4ALL-founder Rop Gonggrijp urges the consequences of the AMS-IX plans be well-studied first.