Free speech and privacy on the wane across the world

Autocratic rule, increased media restrictions and use of mass surveillance affect almost half global population, researchers find Nearly half the worlds people are living in countries where their freedom of speech and right to privacy are being eroded, researchers have found. Strongman regimes seeking to squash voices of dissent and solidify political power are increasingly monitoring citizens through technology, cracking down on protests and jailing journalists, according to a ranking of 198 countries on issues including mass surveillance and data privacy. The Cambodia, where national elections last year prompted Hun Sen, who has been the countrys prime minister for 34 years, to social credit system a mass surveillance and AI programme that gives citizens a social credit score based on …