[Politico] Technical impossibility at heart of EC’s plan to stop spread of online terrorist content

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With its proposed legislation to proactively monitor customer data online, and so “prevent the dissemination of terrorist content”, the European Commission is targeting the wrong players and asking Europe’s cloud infrastructure companies to do something that is flatly impossible. […]

The nature of that work means it’s not possible, in technical terms, for cloud infrastructure providers to proactively monitor, filter, access, disable and take down a specific piece of content, or otherwise play around with their customers’ data. That data is solely controlled by the customer: cloud infrastructure providers do not control what content is put up, how that content is made available to the public, or to whom it is made available by their customers. We are simply the enablers, the processors, with a business model founded on the customers’ trust that we will not access his or her data. This who we are and what we do.

After analyzing the proposals and consulting with representatives of member countries and from the various EU institutions, t’s become clear the regulation is wrongly scoped for and should therefore be targeted at social media platforms and online content sharing services. […]