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26 Apr 2022

Amnesty International

EU: Agreement on Digital Services Act will require Big Tech to assess and manage systemic risks

"European Union: Digital Services Act agreement a ‘watershed moment’ for Internet regulation", 23 April 2022

The political agreement on the Digital Services Act (DSA) ... is a landmark moment in the history of Internet regulation, Amnesty International has said today.

The DSA includes new rules that will require Big Tech platforms – including Facebook and Instagram (owned by Meta), and YouTube (owned by Google) – to assess and manage systemic risks posed by their services, such as advocacy of hatred and the spread of disinformation.

For the first time, Big Tech companies will also need to submit to independent yearly audits, and to give regulators and third-party researchers, including civil society, access to platform data and insights into their algorithmic ‘black boxes’ to ensure greater scrutiny and accountability.

“...The DSA moves us towards an online world that better respects our human rights by effectively putting the brakes on Big Tech’s unchecked power,” said Claudia Prettner, Legal and Policy Adviser at Amnesty Tech.

“It is now crucial that the DSA is robustly enforced so that it does not turn into a mere paper tiger. It is also vital that other jurisdictions around the world follow suit and adopt strong laws to further protect people from the harms caused by Big Tech’s surveillance-based business models.” [added Amnesty].