Edward Snowden, who has been in self-imposed exile since leaking government secrets last year, will speak at the South by Southwest Interactive Festival on Monday, the festival said Tuesday. Snowden will not be there in person, as any return to the United States would likely result in his arrest, appearing instead via videoconference.
Many in the United States government are incensed Snowden revealed the extent of the National Security Agency’s spying, particularly its tracking of both U.S. citizens and foreign leaders.
Snowden’s leaks also revealed a program called PRISM, by which the NSA was accessing information about users of Facebook, Google, Yahoo and other tech giants. Assuring user privacy is critical to all of those businesses, and SXSW is one of the most prominent forums for the technology community.
Snowden will speak with Christopher Soghoian, the principal technologist of the American Civil Liberties Union, and Ben Wizner, an ACLU director and Snowden’s legal advisor.
The three will discuss how the NSA’s spying has affected technology companies, and how technology can protect citizens from surveillance.