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Extensive Covert Surveillance Programme Harms EU Perceptions of U.S. And Could Put TTIP Negotiations at Risk



Extensive Covert Surveillance Programme Harms EU Perceptions of U.S. And Could
                        Put TTIP Negotiations at Risk

PR Newswire

BRUSSELS, Dec. 2, 2013

BRUSSELS, Dec. 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- These are the headline conclusions of
comprehensive comparative studies on attitudes towards data protection
conducted by FTI Consulting in the EU and U.S.

  o EU Respondents Split on Suspending TTIP Negotiations Because of Privacy
    Concerns
  o U.S. Clearly Considered the Main Beneficiary of Big Data and Europeans Say
    Breaches of EU Data Laws by U.S. Companies Should be Prosecuted
  o Scepticism of Claims Data Collection Results in Greater Security, but U.S.
    Respondents More Trusting than Europeans
  o Governments Not Trusted to Responsibly Use Data
  o Healthcare Providers and Law Enforcement Agencies Earn Greatest Trust
  o Social Media, Traditional Media and Politicians Seen as Data Pariahs

The recent revelations of extensive intelligence gathering by United States
("U.S.") agencies on the European Union ("EU"), its citizens and governments
has harmed EU-U.S. relations, and has dampened Europeans' enthusiasm for the
Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership ("TTIP"). This is one of the
major findings from a survey on data security that canvassed the opinions of
1,536 respondents in the EU and 1,000 respondents in the U.S., conducted by
FTI Consulting, Inc. (NYSE: FCN), the global business advisory firm dedicated
to helping organisations protect and enhance their enterprise value.

FTI Consulting conducted separate polls in the U.S. and the EU. It is
important to note that U.S. interviewees were polled from 29 May to 02 June
2013, days before the news of NSA covert surveillance broke, whereas polling
in Europe was carried out from 25 October to 28 October 2013, following months
of high-profile headlines. In that context, a number of additional questions
were included in the EU poll in order to determine attitudes regarding the
latest developments and focused on EU-specific angles; otherwise, the same
questions were asked in each poll in order to allow for a direct comparison of
results.

The bearing of the related privacy concerns on EU-U.S. relations is clearly
marked, with an overwhelming majority of EU respondents – a full
three-quarters (76%) – believing the data protection issue will impact the
EU-U.S. relationship. As a clear example of how the data security issue seems
to have shaken Europeans' support for closer ties with the U.S., EU
respondents are split over continuing support for the TTIP free trade
agreement negotiations, with 49% of EU respondents saying negotiations should
be stalled because of the data issue, and 50% saying they should not. These
findings reflect some recent calls by senior EU politicians in European media
for a suspension of the negotiations.

"The research findings demonstrate that the recent revelations of U.S.
intelligence gathering has had a clear impact on public sentiment in the EU,
and there has been a cooling towards the U.S. in Europe where some
high-profile political figures appear to be leveraging this public sentiment
with their calls for a stalling of the TTIP negotiations," said Dan Healy,
Managing Director in FTI Consulting's Strategy Consulting & Research practice
in London.

FTI Consulting will share the full survey results during a breakfast meeting
at the company's Brussels office on Friday 06 December 2013. To register for
the event click here.

Other findings in the report showed that an overwhelming majority of EU
respondents (84%) somewhat or strongly agree that the EU should be able to
prosecute U.S. companies if the way they handle data breaches EU law. This
echoes Europeans' perceptions on who benefits from big data. The study found
that 45% of EU respondents say the U.S. primarily benefits from big data,
compared to 10% of EU respondents who say the EU is the major beneficiary of
big data. A further third (32%) of EU respondents believe the U.S. and the EU
benefit equally.

Security scepticism is greater in Europe than in the U.S.

When asked what the survey respondents thought about the collection and use of
their personal data by the government, more than half (53%) of EU respondents
felt it was mostly negative versus 33% of EU respondents who felt data
collection was mostly positive. These findings correlate closely with those of
respondents in the U.S., where 55% of respondents thought the collection and
use of their personal data by the government was mostly negative, and 38% felt
data collection was mostly positive.

However, opinions are divided when it comes to the role of information
gathering as a means of providing greater security and safety for the public.
In the U.S., a majority (53%) of respondents think it is somewhat or very
likely that the general public will enjoy greater safety and security as a
result of such information gathering, whereas 44% believe information
gathering is not very or at all likely to provide safety and security. In
contrast, 49% of respondents in the EU think that information gathering as a
means of providing greater safety and security is not very or at all likely,
and 43% (ten percentage points fewer than U.S. respondents) think it is
somewhat or very likely that information gathering will provide greater
security and safety for the public.

Interestingly, when the same question is asked in terms of safety and security
for respondents themselves and their families rather than the general public,
greater scepticism is evident with both U.S. and EU respondents. In this case,
a majority in both regions (54% in the EU and 50% in the U.S.) think that
greater safety and security from information gathering is not very or at all
likely. However, a higher proportion of U.S. respondents (47%) believe greater
security and safety is somewhat or very likely to result from the collection
of personal data, compared to 38% of EU respondents.

Widespread distrust

Similar levels of distrust are expressed about the ability of both the U.S.
and EU governments to responsibly use personal data with 51% of respondents in
the U.S. and 50% of respondents in the EU expressing distrust. Interestingly,
a distinct arm of government, law enforcement agencies, are trusted much more
in both regions, particularly in the U.S. where they are trusted somewhat or a
great deal to responsibly use personal data by 71% of respondents, compared to
28% who do not trust them at all or very much. In the EU, 54% of respondents
say they trust law enforcement agencies somewhat or a great deal to
responsibly use their personal data, versus 41% who do not trust them at all
or very much.

In both regions, respondents indicated that healthcare providers are the most
trusted to responsibly use their personal data (81% of U.S. respondents and
66% of EU respondents). At the other end of the spectrum, the most distrusted
parties to responsibly use personal data are social media sites, which inspire
little or no confidence in 70% of respondents in both the U.S. and the EU. The
media followed with 69% of respondents in the U.S. and 66% of respondents in
the EU indicating little or no confidence. Politicians and political parties
were also viewed as untrustworthy with 62% of respondents in the U.S. and 64%
of respondents in the EU indicating little or no confidence regarding the
responsible use of their personal data.

Research Methodology

FTI Consulting conducted separate polls in the U.S. and the EU. Telephone
interviews were conducted in the U.S. from 29 May to 02 June 2013 among 1,000
adults aged 18 and over. In Europe, online polling was carried out from 25 to
28 October 2013 among 1,536 respondents aged 18 and over in six key EU member
states: Germany, France, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the UK. A number of
additional questions were included in the EU poll in order to determine
attitudes regarding the latest developments in data protection and focused on
EU-specific angles; otherwise, the same questions were asked in each poll in
order to allow for direct comparison of results.

About FTI Consulting

FTI Consulting, Inc. is a global business advisory firm dedicated to helping
organisations protect and enhance enterprise value in an increasingly complex
legal, regulatory and economic environment. With more than 4,100 employees
located in 25 countries, FTI Consulting professionals work closely with
clients to anticipate, illuminate and overcome complex business challenges in
areas such as investigations, litigation, mergers and acquisitions, regulatory
issues, reputation management, strategic communications and restructuring. The
company generated $1.58 billion in revenues during fiscal year 2012. More
information can be found at www.fticonsulting.com.

Investor Contact
Mollie Hawkes
+1.617.747.1791
mollie.hawkes@fticonsulting.com

Media Contact
Arne Koeppel
+32.2.289.09.39
arne.koeppel@fticonsulting.com

SOURCE FTI Consulting, Inc.

Website: http://www.fticonsulting.com
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