IGF 2019 – Day 0 – Raum IV – Pre-Event #42 - Technology And Surveillance In Latin America: Towards Human Rights Standards

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Berlin, Germany, from 25 to 29 November 2019. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 



>> MODERATOR:  Thank you, everyone, for coming.  I want to make a quick round to check what will be the language of the session because it's Latin America oriented session, but we want to ensure that everyone feels included so that's why I'm starting in English.  Can we do a quick round to see how many English speakers we have in the room?  Okay.  We have a few.  And Spanish speakers?  Portuguese speakers?

Everyone is able to bring their presentation or the intervention in the language they feel more comfortable.  I'm going to do the introduction for English for being inclusive of the English speaker guests.  We want them to feel welcome and get access to the information. 

So this session is a session that is intended to discuss about how to find human rights standard to address the use of surveillance technology in Latin America.  This is something we have been discussing in Latin America in different countries, and a discussion that many of the organisations that are present today in this session have championed it in their own countries, and after a short period of time we realized that this is a topic that is affecting everybody in the region, and it has some common characteristics and we can see how this has become a regional trend at the same time.

So we realize there is an essential need to better organize a civil society to being able to share knowledge about what is going on and what could be the strategies to confront this issue in that sense the organisation that I represent, I introduce myself, I thought everybody know me but I am Maria Bosconalis the Secretariat of Digitales.  We have been trying to contribute to this conversation for a while now.  Last year in 2018 we published a series of reports that were looking to different aspects of legal framework existing in some of the countries in Latin America regarding the use of surveillance technology.

And then we proposed, we looked at this at the regional level, different countries in the Latin America.  We conducted a comparative study of some countries around the globe that were particularly strong in these kinds of matters.  Finally we end with a proposition about some of the legal standards that were like mainly intended at the beginning for proposed improvement in the legislation, but that has as a background purpose to spark the conversation for other countries also, and fundamentally also to spark the discussion regarding the Inter‑American system. 

So in this session precisely, we have the tremendous opportunity and we are very welcome Edison Lanza, Special Rapporteur from the Inter‑American system, and we have been in dialogue with him and through him with the InterAmerican Commission about this topic for a while, and we are hoping, and some of us have been proposing to have a thematic hearing on this topic in the Inter‑American system with the InterAmerican Commission for different reasons that hadn't happened yet.  And we want this session maybe can contribute to that discussion and feed the possibility that in the future this is a topic that can attract enough attention from the InterAmerican Commission and in that way not only see what we are proposing, discuss it country by country, basically in the fantastic work that the organisations are doing at a local level but that this can be something that will be addressed in a more orderly and consistent way by the Inter‑American system and according to principles and norms that are in InterAmerican Convention on Human Rights.

Following with that, there are a few key principles that were in the position working as Digitales.  This is to share experiences that are going on in each one of the countries, not one of them but a sample representative of the types of things we are seeing in the regions so we have five speakers that will talk about that, but in terms of principles, one of the thing that we identified and it's available on our website, the key things that we need to think about how to insert in this human rights standard, legal standard for use for technology surveillance are linked with things that are a novelty for the human rights system.  Those things are legally, proportionally, transparency and issues regarding due process.

None of those things are known for the human rights system at large and for the Inter‑American system specifically.  These are things that have been dealing with in the pass and what we have to and the challenge for us as human rights defenders and civil society organisations is precisely to bring how this very well-known standard needs to be updated either in the letter of the legislation or in the spirit, in the way in which legislation is supplied in order to cover all of the issues related to the abusive use of surveilling technology.

So only to finalize with this as I mentioned at the very beginning.  The idea of this kind of convening, and, therefore, Digitales have been trying for the last time, and it's something that the Equal Rights Coalition is doing recently, trying to champion.  It's precisely to have the opportunity to share knowledge, because we see, as I said at the beginning that this is a trend, that it's all over Latin America, and we think that to have one place in which we can concentrate resources and information to allow the organisations and the people being in different countries where this phenomenon emerges have useful resources to being able to participate in the conversation and to fight against that public policy that is related with the use of surveilling technology.

So in that sense, the last thing that I want to mention in this introduction is that we are working on a website that is called (?) in which we are intending to concentrate specifically all of the information that is available about the different cases and the different strategies that have been developed so far to fight against the use of facial recognition in public space with different purposes, with public safety purposes or with social welfare purposes in different Latin American countries.

So I know that Vladimir from Digitales our advocacy Director have been in contact with you to coordinate the possibility of providing feedback for putting more information in the website, but the idea is that you can feel that this is a time in which you can find something useful and you can share something that you consider that can be useful for others in the region work in these kinds of topics.

So with that spirit of collaboration, I will hand this to Vladimir to he can present the different speakers that we have today.  Only as a general instruction let you know that there will be a few introductions apt the beginning and after that this is intended to be a collaborative and participatory session, so feel free to raise your hand and participate in the way that you feel that is more useful.

Thank you and welcome.


>> Hi, I wasn't expecting so many people today, so I'm kind of intimidated right now.  Also I was expecting just people from Latin America.  So I wasn't, I wasn't really prepared to talk in English, so I'm going to make mistakes, and native English speakers, well, I'm sorry, but I was more comfortable doing this in Spanish.

I want to thank all of the nice people who accepted our invitation today.  If you can come and I can introduce you as you just come.  Don't be shy.  Come join me.  I was thinking that that was the special Chair from the moderator, but I don't know.  I don't see myself as a moderator, more like a dance and song man, but on this occasion, I will be a facilitator as Maria was. 

The idea behind the session is to be as conversational as possible, so basically the logistics of this is going to be that each one of these persons is going to make a brief presentation about what is happening in their own countries, and then we can have an open conversation with I can make some questions to you, but also some other people has that in the audience, and you can also give answers and make your own questions.

So today we have Ricardo from ABC.  Raise your hand, and applause.  We have Paloma from Paraguay.  We have Moses from Brazil.  We have Dankut from APC.  Thank you for being a part of this.  And let's start, maybe we can start with Eduardo, and this is going to be a multicultural session so anybody is free to speak in the language they feel more comfortable and you can mix languages if you want.  That's all right.  This is a safe space.

>> EDUARDO:   Hello?  Yes.  I will start by speaking in Spanish, I'm not prepared to speak in English right now, but anyway, it will be a very quick presentation and that we can switch to English or the language that you prefer.  So switch into Spanish.  (No English translation.).

>> VLADIMIR:  Maybe Paloma from Paraguay you can go next.

>> PALOMA:  I'm from an NGO that works human rights in technology.  I will speak in English, but I may be making some mistakes so I'm sorry in advance.  I will talk about this facial recognition cameras in Paraguay and judicial action is taking place from Tarik in that sense, we learned from Tarik that several facial recognition cameras were being implemented.  Due to this law that came out in 2014 that is access, public information access, we submitted a request so that the state can give us information regarding how these cameras work, what type of technology they use, if they had protocols to use them, if they had done research given the impact of these in human rights standards and how it could affect people.  And several other questions, like geo localization and other stuff.

So basically the state responded giving information only regarding the purchases of the cameras, and they avoided giving the other several informations we requested basically saying that these belonged to classified information, because it had to do with national security.  This is a very tricky thing because the law says that clearly anything that has to be considered as part of national security has to be established clearly in the law beforehand.

So this is not the case because this is not in any legislation.  So what they alleged, claimed was that it was national security just because it was containing sensitive information and because it was debated in the council mechanism.  And the law says that anything that is debate in the national defense Council is secret, but just like what is debated, not the issue, but what happens in the meeting.

So that clearly was an arbitrary movement from the states, so what we did was we proceeded to take action with a constitutional action that is just based on protecting citizens from anything that can be abomination to their rights, so we started that action.  We lost in the first instance where the judge actually said, yes, you are right, this is not in any legislation.  This shouldn't be reserved, but it is, just because it comes from the national police.

And also because in that first resolution from the state where we were denied the information, they said that the cameras were put in there to protect citizens from being assaulted or so basically just like crimes committed from citizens to citizens.  So the judge says, no, this classifies us national information just because it comes from the police it's an action being held by the national police, and because it's destined to protect citizens.

So this is where we started elaborating on appeal to the sentence where we basically say that it's very dangerous for this logic to be applied because it's the same logic that was applied in the dictatorships in Latin America where anything could be national security just because of where it came from, but not the issue itself, just because it comes from the police, then it automatically gets put in a place where it's classified.

This is very dangerous because it's the same procedure, right?  And from the other hand, we are saying, no, this doesn't even classify as national security because national security has to be something that protects the state as an institution, so it's a democratic process it's a menace to the state as institution, not crimes of robbery, for example, between citizens.

So question said this is not to protect citizens, this is actually violating the rights of citizens and it creates insecurity of the law enforcement.  So we made an appeal with those allegations.

The judge from the appeal said, no, the first instance was correct, and I'm standing by that without any further explanation or analysis.  So right now what we are doing is we started an action of unconstitutionality against the first sentence of the Minister of the interior which would be the Minister of Security affairs, internal affairs.

So we started an unconstitutional action to declare the unconstitutionality of that law and also the other sentences that legitimize that first resolution.  So now we are basically waiting for the judges to take this into consideration.  Right now this was two months ago and we still haven't received a number for the file, so clearly it's going very slow.

Another interesting thing that I would like to add before passing the microphone and then we can discuss further is that another organisation like the Digitales are working so we can present it in court and show that this is not something that is happening in Paraguay, this is something that is happening regionally and is concerning all of the citizens, not just like national citizens.  Human rights appeal to everyone and as he was saying there are fundamental rights that need to be applied in order to take in account these kinds of situations.  And it's also important to understand the technology cannot be used in a way that it violated human rights because if we think about as I was saying about the uses of the logic of dictatorships in Latin America.

I don't know if you heard of the plan regarding dictatorships in Latin America that came from the United States.  So the files that prove that it was happening was found in Paraguay, the files and in that files many surveillance was acknowledges in the files and it was the way the state proceeded to surveil citizens and to intercept communications and to make cases out of that and then to torture and other horrific stuff that happened.

So we are concerned about that that fact may not just be a sad memory, a sad file, but just like for like, like a prediction of something even worse because you can use technology as a more sophisticated weapon that is faster and it can do much worse than it was before.  So we have to be very careful about how we analyze technology in this kind of spaces.  Thank you.


>> VLADIMIR:  Thank you so much, Paloma.  And thank you for doing it in English.  It was really great.  Maybe you can tell us about the case, which is very interesting, very different.

>> PALOMA:  So I will also try to say something in English.  I hope it makes sense.  In the case of Ecuador, the Government adopted a program, digital Ecuador that is supposed to put the country, supposed to fast track the way into innovation and to put Ecuador in the dynamic of the digital economy, but it has quite problematic aspects.  One of those is related to how they are going to use a specific system, technological systems including facial recognition.  And they are doing this with two main purposes.

One is to combat insecurity, and the other one is supposed to increase the efficiency of the liberty of public services.  And both are very problematic.  Let me tell you why.  So in the first case, in the case of the implementation of facial recognition system to increase the conditions of security in Keto, Keto is being used as a pilot project in a kind of interinstitutional cooperation agreement between the Ministry of Telecommunications and the major of the city, the Government of the city to digital ID to be able to use the cameras that are installed across the city, across and along the city and be able for these cameras to perform facial recognition and, therefore, provide better security conditions for the inheritance of the city.  So that's the first initiative that the Government is undertaking.  For purpose of improving how the Government delivers social benefits and services to specific groups, they want to implement this digitalization of ID cards.

And this is targeting specific groups.  In the case of the one that we are trying to do an unconstitutional action is around an initiative that is targeting elder people, children, and also people with disabilities.  And because of that condition, particularly the ones that are facing poverty and have been categorized as living in poverty or extreme poverty.  So because of that condition, they have the right to access to specific public benefits and in order to access to these benefits, the Government is proposing to replace the current registration system and also to keep a record of who is accessing actually to these benefits and it would consist of a facial recognition system and we are very worried because in the case of Ecuador, there is no legislation for protecting personal data.

It's one of the few countries in the Latin American region that doesn't have this type of legislation, so it is operating in a vacuum in that sense.  And also because the culture of privacy culture and culture in general to protect these types of rights and protect personal data is not good.  We don't have a good record on that.

You might have heard about a scandal, maybe not because Ecuador is a tiny country so even if it is a scandal it does not appear in the international news, but there was a massive leak of information of millions of Ecuadorians, personal data that was supposed to be on a database, a public database, and that ended up being in the hands of a private corporation, a private company.

And this company obviously was using this information with the profit purposes.  So we have no good checker in terms of protecting information of citizens.  Our concern is that the implementation of these systems is obviously happening without any dem democratic oversight.  It's without public deliberation.  We believe these systems that have an impact not only in terms of privacy, in terms of the illegitimate uses that can be made of this information, obviously the impact of these systems particularly targeting specific groups that are facing historical and structural conditions of vulnerability will end up in putting them in higher risk and even deepening or exacerbating the conditions of inequality they live in and, I mean, increasing the level of vulnerability that they face.

So that is basically the situation in Ecuador at the moment.  I won't go deeper, but in the conversation, perhaps I can give you more details, but this is basically the situation.

So in summary obviously the Government is expecting everyone to buy this ID and this notion that by implementing these systems obviously security is going to increase, and also that the delivering of social services is going to become more efficient.  And obviously they are spending and allocating a lot of resources to build this narrative, which is quite injurious, and in the case of Ecuador, civil society is quite weak in addressing these issues at the moment.

Fortunately there is a coalition that is starting to look at these issues in more detail and it is very important in terms of being able to counter act and not only to prove the unconstitutionally of this measure but to push for legislation that could hopefully protect these types of rights.  And now, maybe Joana could tell us about Brazil.  I know she made a presentation so thank you for that.

>> JOANA VARON:  I'm going to speak in Portuguese so nobody understands.  So Brazil, so I'm Joana Varon from Coding Rights a coalition that talks about power imbalances in technology, power imbalances related to New York and south and agenda issues.  In Brazil back in 2014 we did this, I did this protesters.org in which it was a guide for people to think about their rights and their digital, how to protect their data in protests, and one of the sessions of the guides were about facial recognition.

By then we did not have still projects of facial recognition being implemented in the cities, but we are pointing out that there are cameras.  Cameras are archives.  People can use the database afterward and implement facial recognition technology and then get to know who are in the protests, like doing what.

So we are flagging this and after that, that was 2014.  2017 since the protest that started mostly here because we had announced that Brazil was going to host the World Cup, the Olympics, we could see a massive changes in the legal institutional scenario that allows for surveillance in Brazil.  You will not be able to see or read what is what, but on the top are legislations that allows for surveillance and here institutions.

And back‑to‑back with that, we had increased, increase of those operations of what we call GLO, like Lou and order operations that are correlated to military intervention.  Back‑to‑back with those events, Brazil was becoming a major market of surveillance technologies.  Then 2009,  '19 democracy failed.

And I'm in the public hearing to talk about facial recognition technologies used for public security for reasons.  In this panel with a lot of vendors, men looking a bit mad at me because I was saying those technologies don't work.  I was bringing this example of an implementation of those technologies in Wales and London in which Big Brother Watch managed to get this information on how they wrongly identified in people in Wales, 91% in London of the metro police, 98%.  By that time even the UN criticized the use of that technology considering all of this experience.

In Brazil we started to then conduct pilots during carnival whether everybody wants to be fueled by the police and the technology was being implemented in partnership with the Chinese Wei who are a telecom company which was already sued for invading privacy of the users.  This is the guy from Wei in the public hearing saying that the technologies were great.

As a result, this news Article from November 22 that we started, and there were tests also in Salvador, and I don't know maybe other tests, you speak about that.  So we had this news Article in San Paolo said that 95% of people arrested due to the usage of facial recognition technologies are black people and so it was 90%.

The issue of gender intersectional issue of gender and the intersectionalities pertaining to this technology is particularly, it flags a lot of warnings.  As we saw that's already happening in Brazil, but, for instance, in the U.S., ACLU tests the recognition software, Amazon software, and they input into the software of facial recognition pictures of faces of Congressmen and 28 members of Congress were identified as someone who has been arrested for crimes.

If it was in Brazil, programs that was accurate, but it was not the case.  And, again, Congressmen or Congresswoman of color would be flagged more often.  There is also this researcher from M.I.T., Winnig, who has been pointing out the facial aspect and the gender aspect of discrimination in the use of facial recognition.  She played with the softwares from Microsoft, Facebook and IBM and again, the index of error is, the margin of error is around 90 something percent, even more if you are a woman and a woman with dark skin.

So what I want to flag is also that whether we talk about surveillance, we need to also think about the bodies that are being surveilled and depending to which body is being surveilled, the consequences are going to be even worse.  So have this gender lenses to our surveillance thinking that those bodies, they have been surveilled are the bodies they are fighting against what this color called matrix of domination capitalism, white supremacy, colonialism, those are more likely to be more surveilled and more punished.

Just to finish, there are some companies that are saying they are not going to sell our facial recognition technology yet because it's crap, but then they go and do things like that, training AI on homeless people because they don't have many rights so Google was doing that to try to abuse the facial recognition systems their facial recognition systems.  That was flagged as something inhuman, and they stopped doing this.  It was for five gift cards for homeless.

So the facial recognition technology is not the only problem even if it gets more accurate and it's likely to be because they are using homeless and everything to improve it, still it's a mechanism for massive surveillance.  So we need to be careful also to point out that even if it's obvious it's not appropriate technology.  Particularly as we see those shifts in our democracies.  This is a sign that was given to Bolsonaro a week ago.  He is opening up a party and this sign is written alliance for Brazil with bullets.

So this is also the people that are going to use this technologies.  So how do we hack it?  We are moving from our data that is being surveilled through our devices to our bodies being surveilled.  How do we encrypt our bodies?  And to wrap in a happy mood if there is any, there are initiatives, no?  In the U.S., particularly in California, Oakland where big tech firms are, they are banning the use of facial recognition for reasons, near M.I.T. also banning and the State of Massachusetts is also discussing a moratorium for the uses of this technologies.  It's not by chance that there are two technology are discussing to ban it, it's people who are creating, developing the technologies are.

And if it doesn't happen, it's likely that we will have to be more fun while walking on the streets or protesting.  There are lots of projects like this.  This is joy, the researcher from M.I.T. that I mentioned and I'm playing with glasses to trick facial recognition.  This is a very old project, also with makeup or jewelry, and people have been playing with the changing the faces.  This is a way to encrypt if we don't ban it.  People drag up and was dragged versus AI it was also Joy and Sasha from the M.I.T. trying to play facial recognition technologies.

Or we can go Hong Kong and use lasers, which has already inspired Chile, the new way to protest the surveillance, but I'd rather burn it.  Thank you.

>> VLADIMIR:  Thank you Joana and thank you for the presentation.  It is very good.  Because Brazil is so big, we have another Brazilian participant.

>> (No English translation).

>> VLADIMIR:  Thank you so much.  We have some time left, not that much time but I don't want to miss the opportunity to extend all of these presentations.  This is not all of the projects to are in place right now in Latin America.  There are other ones, for example, in Bolivia, and I know that Alina is here so I want to give her a chance to tell us about ball 10 if that's possible.

>> My name is Alina Fernando I come from Internet Bolivia.  I'm sorry for my voice and I will speak in Spanish.

(No English translation).

>> VLADIMIR:  Thank you so much.  Thank you for doing it on short notice.  We have some time left so I will jump to the question and the more participatory section of the session.  But I don't want to pass the opportunity to ask what was going to be my last question and now it's going to be my only question.

I think that there is like two possibilities here because this section is about standards, and I think on one hand we have the possibility to make some regulation around facial recognition, and we can discuss what those standards should be.

The other option is just to ask for the ban of facial recognition, something Joana mentioned.  And, of course, these two possibilities have strong parts and weak parts.  So my question is what do you think we should do?  What do you think that we as the Latin American civil society should ask for and should work for?  Who wants to answer the question?

>> Is there some reaction to the panel but also welcome reaction from the panel.

>> VLADIMIR:  So the panel.  Maybe Joana.

>> JOANA VARON:  So in the U.S. what we saw is that there are some cases of banning, and in the State of Massachusetts what they are discussing is moratorium so there has been a campaign press pause, they would like to pause the usage of this for the issues of public security to understand better how eventually they can regulate so there is even the solution of moratorium that perhaps is a narrative that other sides of the forces can comprehend better than the banning is more difficult.

But there are different usages of facial recognition.  Jutta was mentioning uses that are related to companies and also usages for education, for emotions.  In Brazil we saw also recently that churches have implemented facial recognition technologies so monitor the emotions and who attended, are you really talking to God or something like that.  So there are many usages, and I think depending on what you can, you don't need to talk about banning, but you can regulate.

But for me the issue on usages of this technology by law enforcement agencies to arrest someone and people are being brought to the commission in the face of this, it's too much.  So then we could talk about banning, but other cases, perhaps.  I know that's very hard to say this technology should just not exist.

For instance, once I was in a conversation with a developer from Mexico, and he was mentioning there is in Mexico, we have people that are disappear the.  Maybe we could use that technology to find people.  I was like, yes, I don't know.  We need to think about it with more people.  So perhaps press pause and think further and divide the different uses, not put everything in one bucket is one approach.

>> And after we have some intervention.


>> AUDIENCE:  In the current conditions in Argentina for particular but maybe in Latin America in general there is no place for facial recognition in the public space and surveillance, and by current condition we mean two things, first, societies with great social inequality, plus there are many different social needs that are not met by the states so in that context, we believe that the state has to promote social space as a place to foster protests and not a space of control.  That's ADC's position.

>> So for the interventions on the floor.

>> Before we move to the floor, I don't want to but Asa on the spot but it would be great to hear his take on this question.

>> Maybe we could give him some time.  So we will take two from the floor and we give him time to be prepared.  So please introduce yourself and your organisation and your comment or question.

>> AUDIENCE:  Okay.  Thanks so much.  I'm from Brazil, I'm Professor in the university and a member of a high level panel of a digital cooperation.

Thank you so much for everything that you have said about that.  We are facing very tough times.  I believe you can have some paths to follow.  First of all, civil society do not understand technology and do not understand the implication, social implication of technology.  That's the reason why the Government can manipulate the society in the way that they want.  Every time that I discuss with general audience, people got very surprised when I say that technology can lead to misogyny, segregation, environment degradation, diminishment of human agency and so on.  So people do not understand.

So we need to amplify the public awareness about the technology.  Another thing is instead of thinking about to create it, we need to think about the soft utilization that can be created using or developed by standard, international standards.  You can see organisation like IEEE have Working Groups that focus on creating soft regulations for 1 data privacy and protection, and also protection of children's data and so on.

One point that I will raise in the panel that I participate in the UN, it was to rethink about the human rights declarations, because the human rights declarations are so abstract and most of the people do not understand exactly the principles and do not understand how to map this principle to the digital age.  I'm not sure what has happened today related to that, but our recommendation that is published in our report was fully supported by Mechel Bashalay put her consideration on how to implement this recommendation.

I discuss about how we can map the human rights principles to the technology demand.  That can give another perspective about the technology impacted and how also to ascribe the responsibility, accountability not only to Government but also to companies that develop the technology.  Thank you.

>> AUDIENCE:  Thank you.  Paraguay, association Trinidad.  Thank you very much for your presentation, but it is not very simple your position.  (Speaking non‑English language).

>> AUDIENCE:  I am Maria Lopez, open Internet for democracy initiative, and also journalists, and I wonder if in particular this five NGOs has to put the focus on the companies that sells the technologies to the first Governments of the different companies that in Latin America.  And I put this question here because in Venezuela, for example, the Government, the plan to buy particular system and a company is Reilly is called Celebrity.  It's software to hack all of the cell phones and 30 NGOs in Venezuela try to stop this particular buying of the software.

And I think that it is an important point here to try to focus and the companies that sell all of the software for facial recognition and hacking cell phones.

>> Good afternoon, I am Lance, special Rapporteur in the American human rights system.  First of all, congratulations for all of the presentations.  Amazing context and panorama of Latin America.  I switch to Spanish because I want to good in very fast in response of the question that the panel did (Speaking non-English language).

>> Thank you.

>> (Speaking non-English language).

>> (Speaking non-English language).

>> Thank you.  One there, and then ‑‑ I don't know ‑‑ well, three, but really quickly because we almost have no time.

>> AUDIENCE:  (Speaking non-English language).

>> I want to suggest to throw stones to the cameras, that's the first step, I think.

>> With the lasers that Joana was showing, green laser for taking down drones.

>> AUDIENCE:  Hi, everyone, I'm going to speak in Spanish because I want to make it quicker and it's better for me.  (Speaking non-English language).

>> AUDIENCE:  (Speaking non-English language).

>> So I have a lot of questions and I have a lot of comments, but I have no time at all to make any of them, and I know that Maria Paz asked me two minutes in the end, so I will give the Mike to her.

>> MARIA PAZ:  I don't know if someone from the panel have an intervention or I can do the wrap-up if you are okay.  So I think that first thank you, because you are the ones that have firsthand experience with all of the situations.  You have been working hard fighting this.  You have been working precisely what Veronica mentioned at the end which is building a narrative that people on the street can understand why these technologies are a threat for the exercise of their rights.

And at least be critical to think about this one as presented by the Government.  So all of these narratives about how technology can improve the exercise of rights, our narratives that need to be regarded with a critical eye.  And many times that doesn't happen in our region in Latin America.  Also as a result of the lack of good public education in general and the lack of access to information and the lack of diversity of point of view because of the media concentration, all of those factors are factors that are against to provide more clear information to the general public about what are the threats that these technologies post.  So being said that, I think that also linking to Veronica's intervention, last intervention.  The effort of this session was precisely on that collaboration and on that possibility to identify ourselves so you know now that everyone that is in this room is interested by this topic, is working this topic.

You know that the Special Rapporteur of the Inter‑American system in freedom of expression is interested in hearing about these kinds of issues.  So these are very valuable resources.

You also hear at the beginning of this session that I introduced this website specifically for facial recognition information that Digitales is putting together, and, again, the invitation is to use this as a tool for you for finding information and also for providing relevant information in all of these topics of use of surveillance technology and how to look and how to build narratives that are critical to the implementation of this system in our region.

And finally, just because I didn't mention at the beginning and I think that it's very relevant for each one in the panel and for all of you in the audience, we have to acknowledge and it was very good to put it out to the political context particularly in Brazil, but you have to acknowledge now that we are going in a very hard difficult political context in Latin America with all of the social unrest and the protests and the repression that is coming from Government.

So some of the questions that are linked to talk about human rights standard and legal standard for surveilling technologies are very linked with what is going on now, because there is a huge possibility that all of these social unrest results in a backlash in terms of Government trying to find in the technology the solution for many of these problems.  So we need to be prepared and we need to have an articulate narrative and discourse to explain why using technology is not a shortcut for solving the problems, but rather they could be amplifiers of the problem we are seeing on the street now.

So limitation is in that sense also to keep track of this topic, to come together, and to build this narrative and communicate them even when you are with your families on the table on Sunday, because it's really relevant to think about this in a political sense also.  And to think that the principles that I was mentioning at the beginning are not the things new.  So we are talking about legality, so who has really the ability to implement this system?  Should the administrative programmes be implemented directly by the executive powers of the Government or should the Democratic discussions be in the Parliaments?

Then we have the proportionality.  How we should demand that any kind of implementation of this system, it's accompanied by a real study of human rights impacts so human rights impact assessment in order to prove that really these technologies are useful for what they are saying that they are useful.

That's another thing that is very familiar also for the traditional system and it has a lot of elements from Inter‑American system and for the international human rights framework do drape on.  Then we have the transparency, all of the things that were mentioned about how technology has been sold by companies to Government or they are provided in Government to Government agreement as was pointed out.  That's very relevant and we as population should demand the biggest transparency in the agreements or any kind of association that imply the transfer of this technology, and this is many times associated also in our region with corruption.

So for a double reason we should be particularly critical and demand transparency in these technologies and finally due process I was mentioning also at the beginning.  How we should take everything that has been done in the past, in the Inter‑American system regarding what are the elements of due process and how that should apply to the interpretation of the criminal procedures that exist in each one of the countries for a prosecuting crimes that many times the protections and the provision that were provided for the physical act are not provided when technology is in place.

We have many times the police or the intelligence services in the countries, just not paying attention of any of the limitation and procedures that are established in the criminal law or in the intelligence laws to use this kind of technology to access to information to people to surveil people, whatever.

So those are not things that are new, but need a more progressive interpretation for applying to surveillance technology, and we should demand for this.  We should work together for this and we should also try to inspire the Inter‑American system to take on this issue.  So thank you very much, and this is the idea is to have a continuing conversation.  We have these resources in Digitales, you know the fantastic people here, so keep the attention and keep the work on this.  Thank you very much to you.

>> VLADIMIR:  Thank you very much Maria Paz.  Thanks to the panelists.  Thank you for coming and staying.  Just one quick announcement, if you are interested in any of these cases we just released a brief report on facial recognition in Latin America.  You can find it on the digital he is website, digital he is.org.  So thank you.