By Brendon Lynch, Chief Privacy Officer

Today my colleague Matt Thomlinson, Vice President, Microsoft Security, was on a panel entitled “Rebooting Trust? Freedom vs. Security in Cyberspace” at the long standing (it is in its 50th year!) Munich Security Conference.

This discussion about security and privacy in cyberspace comes at a critical time - for consumers, for the information and communications technology industry, and for international relations.

Matt focused on how we must all look forward and work to move from a crisis of trust to an era of greater confidence.

He also discussed a number of efforts afoot to protect customer data from government snooping, which our Microsoft General Counsel & Executive Vice President Brad Smith recently announced.   Brad outlined three areas where Microsoft would be taking action: expanding encryption across our services; reinforcing legal protections for our customers’ data; and enhancing the transparency of our software code. 

Following that summary, Matt discussed a specific step we are taking in implementing those commitments -- establishing a number of locations called Transparency Centers, to enable even greater assurances of the integrity of our products and services.

Matt announced that Microsoft will open a Transparency Center in Brussels, one of several around the world. This is an extension of our long-standing program that provides government customers with the ability to review Microsoft source code and reassure themselves that there are no "back doors" in our products.

Learn more about the Brussels Transparency Center announcement and other efforts here.  You can also watch and listen to the panel discussion here.

The world is Internet-dependent. Governments and the private sector have to find a way to ensure that we have a cyberspace that meets our needs for security, privacy and reliability.