US spooks play into the hands of Russia, China and others who want control over global digital citizens

No wonder Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping are smiling: they are closer than they have ever been to mastering who is saying and doing what online. They and other authoritarian leaders are watching with glee as US intelligence agencies destroy what is left of the original utopian vision of a cyberspace free of government control.The process was under way long before Edward Snowden revealed the extent of surveillance by the US National Security Agency. But the allegations of mass monitoring of hitherto friendly political leaders, businesses and ordinary internet users around the world have stoked a backlash with worrying consequences.

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