Julian Assange has sounded a warning about the amount of data Google and Facebook collect, saying it outstrips even what the NSA collects.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange says Silicon Valley companies Google and Facebook now compile more information than the US' National Security Agency.
Speaking via a videoconference at the embassy of Ecuador in London, where he was granted asylum in 2012, Assange said the new global economic template was what he called Surveillance Capitalism.
The Australian spoke during a Freedom of Expression seminar organised in Santiago by the Chilean College of Journalists that was celebrating its 60th anniversary.
The cyberactivist said although the information was channelled through the two companies, the NSA still monitored the content and finally ended up "knowing everything".
The former University of Melbourne mathematician and journalist said society was living through an age of massive data where more than 80 per cent of the internet's advertising revenue flowed through Google and Facebook.
Assange said, as an example, that Google was asserting its dominance in the transport sector thanks to its maps and street-level satellite imagery, and also because people made searches using Google from their mobile phones.