WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange compares Google to the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) as well as the British spy agency, GCHQ.
Google has become “a privatized version of the NSA,” collecting, storing and indexing people’s data, Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange told BBC and Sky News Thursday.
Speaking at a press conference at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London, where he has lived since 2012 after being granted asylum by the Latin American country, Assange outlined the links between the internet giant and the U.S. and British spy agencies.
“Google’s business model is the spy. It makes more than 80 percent of its money by collecting information about people, pooling it together, storing it, indexing it, building profiles of people to predict their interests and behavior, and then selling those profiles principally to advertisers, but also others,” said Assange. “So the result is that Google, in terms of how it works, its actual practice, is almost identical to the National Security Agency or GCHQ.”
“They are formally listed as part of the defense industrial base since 2009. They have been engaged with the Prism system, where nearly all information collected by Google is available to the NSA,” Assange said.
The whistleblower argues that “at the institutional level, Google is deeply involved in US foreign policy” and has been working with the NSA “in terms of contracts since at least 2002.”
Assange recently released a new book titled “When Google Met WikiLeaks,” produced during his stay at the Ecuadorian Embassy where he has been forced to seek refuge out of fear of being arrested by the British police and sent to the United States. In the book, Assange reveals details about his encounter with Google chairman, Eric Schmidt in 2011.