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Silicon Valley fears losing tech pre-eminence in wake of Prism spy fallout


By John Glenday, Reporter

June 11, 2013 | 2 min read

Revelations around the closeness of nine of America’s top tech firms to the US government have stoked fears in Silicon Valley that America could lose its crown as the pre-eminent centre of the global technology industry.

Google, Apple and Facebook are amongst nine firms known to have collaborated with the Prism spy programme, allegedly allowing government officials to mine information from their servers, raising suggestions that this could open the door to a new wave of regional competitors amidst a consumer backlash.

Gartner analyst Roy Valdes said: “In the long term there is going to be a negative impact on US-based technology companies. There could be regional players that grow stronger, based on users in those regions deciding that they would prefer to trust the local equivalent of Google or Facebook.

“For users, it is a case of pick your poison. It is deal with the devil you know or deal with the devil you sort of know.”

Two firms which stood out from the pack are Amazon and Twitter, neither of whom were mentioned in the leaks and who are generally trusted to a greater degree than their competitors.

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