PARIS, April 10 French presidential candidate
and frontrunner Emmanuel Macron said on Monday he would step up
efforts to get technology firms such as Google or
Facebook to share encrypted content from messaging
services with authorities.
Governments around the world are increasingly looking at how
they can lean on major U.S. tech companies in their efforts to
prevent militant attacks and beef up security, including by
asking them to do more to stop hate speech and extremist
That has sparked a debate over users' privacy, however.
Macron, a centrist and favoured to win France's two-part
election if he makes it to a run-off on May 7, said he would
require firms like Google, Apple, Facebook and Twitter
to rapidly remove any extremist propaganda from their
Outlining his policies on security in France, which has been
hit by several deadly Islamist attacks in the past two years,
Macron added that he would strengthen measures requiring tech
companies to give law enforcement access to encrypted material.
"If I get elected, France will as of this summer undertake a
major initiative aimed at the big internet companies so that
they accept a legal framework for requisitions of encrypted
services in the context of counter-terrorism efforts," Macron
told a news conference.
He said he wanted to build on this effort alongside other
British officials demanded last month that tech firms do
more to help police gain access to messaging services and track
suspects' communications, after an attack in Westminster,
London, where the perpetrator had used encrypted communications.
Germany is planning a new law calling for social networks
like Facebook and Twitter to remove hate speech quickly or face
fines of up to 50 million euros ($54 million).
Google declined to comment. Facebook, Apple and Twitter did
not immediately respond to requests for comment.
(Reporting by Sarah White and Mathieu Rosemain; Editing by Toby