Edward Snowden NSA revelations 'one of the major issues of the 21st Century' says The Guardian's editor in chief Alan Rusbridger

The Guardian's editor in chief, Alan Rusbridger has described the Edward Snowden revelations on the National Security Agency (NSA) in the US's data mining, reported first by his newspaper, as "universal" and said that he believes them to be one of the major issues of the 21st Century.

Speaking to The Drum after a panel session that opened up Advertising Week Europe, Rusbridger, who chaired the discussion around online security and data usage by companies, described the story as "very important" for countries such as the US, Europe and Scandinavia, revealed that it had generated a mix reaction for reasons he could not explained.

It raises very big questions that are going to be of interest to anyone who runs a business, or anyone who uses the Internet," he continued. "The issues are universal, they are not just about security and what he had done is to make it frightening all rent how vulnerable we all are and how vulnerable the technology we uses all are. It's going to be one of the big issues of the 21st Century."

He also claimed that Snowden would never have come to The Guardian to reveal the documents he had taken from the NSA on PRISM had it not been open for all to read for free.

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