U.S. Tech should worry even more about the Snowden effect

Edward Snowden speaks to a European Council parliamentary hearing

U.S. technology companies have a lot to fear from the fallout over the widespread spying by the National Security Agency. Corporate customers ripping out their products from data centers around the world isn’t one of them.

The real threat? Projects just getting off the ground. A $185-million submarine data cable that Brazil is building to Europe – which the country says can be built without U.S. technologies – offers one example, which we reported on today.

The cable illustrates a bigger problem facing Silicon Valley and the rest of the U.S. tech industry: Emerging markets are spending more on information technology and taking a bigger share of the global market, as growth rates from developed countries are slowing down.

If the Brazil-to-Europe cable is built as planned, and U.S. tech firms are passed over in favor of European, Asian or local suppliers, it would be a sign that when it comes to international tech projects, the Snowden Effect will be as widespread as the NSA’s surveillance.

The dummies in Congress continue to maintain the Cold War mentality which has ballooned since 9/11. On one hand you have the wholesale handover of American privacy into the disdainful care of the NSA and FBI. They couldn’t care less about our rights.

On the other hand, you have populist politicians who attack furriners – especially China – as the Red Menace which sleeps in the closet opposite your bed – while terrorists sleep underneath. So, Huawei – which built the broadband infrastructure for France and a chunk of the UK, as examples – is banned from doing business in the United States. Does anyone think that constitutes a negative in the eyes of nations already put off by US militarism, snoops and profiteers? If Uncle Sugar is afraid of this company they must be doing something right.

Huawei may or may not get a piece of the Brazilian project; but, Cisco doesn’t stand a chance.

3 thoughts on “U.S. Tech should worry even more about the Snowden effect

  1. Blowback says:

    U.S. companies could forgo as much as $35 billion in revenue through 2016 because of doubts about the security of their systems, according to the Washington-based Information Technology & Innovation Foundation, a policy research group.
    Brazilian President Rousseff has indicated that after the Fortaleza-to-Portugal cable to Europe, Brazil will study building direct connections to Africa and Asia. Interactive Submarine Cable Map (2013) @ http://submarine-cable-map-2013.telegeography.com/ See also http://www.extremetech.com/computing/96827-the-secret-world-of-submarine-cables

  2. Firula says:

    “Brazil’s New Underwater Data Cable to Portugal Is Still Likely Not NSA-Proof” https://news.vice.com/article/brazils-new-underwater-data-cable-to-portugal-is-still-likely-not-nsa-proof …in any case: “Brazil’s idea is meant to assuage a deeply suspicious general public within the South American country of US preponderance of power in the international economy, and smacks of technological nationalism – one of the many unintended consequences of the Snowden revelations” according to Franz-Stefan Gady, a senior fellow of cyberspace cooperation at the EastWest Institute. See also Operation Ivy Bells

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