Navigating the Intersection of Technology, Privacy, and Public Safety with Microsoft: Insights from Meridian’s Global Dialogue Dinner

Seated at a formal dinner, a woman holds her hands together as she speaks to fellow dinner guests.
Julie Brill (Microsoft) during the Meridian Global Dialogue Dinner, "Exploring the Role of Data in Public Safety and National Security," on March 14, 2024 at Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C. Photo by Stephen Bobb.

In today’s era, where technological advancements drive both innovation and criminal activities, establishing shared norms among nations is crucial for combating global crimes. This imperative was highlighted during a Meridian Global Dialogue Dinner held on March 14, 2024 at Meridian House. The salon dinner, hosted in partnership with Microsoft, convened senior U.S. government officials, foreign diplomats and thought leaders to discuss some of the most pressing data privacy and law enforcement challenges of our time. At the heart of the discussion was Julie Brill, Chief Privacy Officer and Corporate Vice President for Global Privacy, Safety, and Regulatory Affairs at Microsoft, who served as the evening’s guest of honor.

Facilitated by Travis LeBlanc (Board Member, U.S. Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board), the discussion shed light on the myriad obstacles surrounding data sharing practices among tech firms and law enforcement agencies, both domestically and globally. Specifically, the discussion drew attention to the U.S. and the European Union, where the absence of a comprehensive data sharing agreement has hindered the ability of many U.S. and EU-based tech companies and law enforcement agencies to effectively address and combat transnational crimes, including human trafficking, terrorism, cybercrimes, and child exploitation. Yet, despite the increasingly evident need for international cooperation, navigating the complexities of data sharing is not straightforward, even among nations with aligned objectives and values.

Participants explored the practical challenges of implementing a U.S.-EU e-Evidence agreement, including the need to reconcile differences in legal procedures and privacy regulations. The discussion delved into the complexities of cross-border data requests, ensuring compliance with relevant data protection laws while facilitating timely access to electronic evidence for law enforcement purposes. Participants also discussed the potential impact on digital rights and civil liberties, particularly regarding the risk of overreach.

As the evening’s discussion progressed, it became clear that achieving consensus on these complex matters would require sustained dialogue, compromise, and a shared commitment to upholding the principles of democracy and the rule of law. Participants urged governments and tech companies to seize the opportunity presented by upcoming elections to prioritize these issues and take meaningful action that fosters a safer and more secure future for all.

This program is part of Meridian’s Global Dialogue series, which brings together individuals from diverse sectors to examine the central policy challenges confronting both the United States and the world in a nonpartisan and neutral setting.

This program was made possible through the support of


Project summary

Navigating the Intersection of Technology, Privacy, and Public Safety with Microsoft: Insights from Meridian’s Global Dialogue Dinner | March 2024
Number of Attendees: 25
Regions: Europe and Eurasia
Countries: Portugal, Belgium, France, Netherlands
Impact Areas: Governance and Transparency
Partners: Private Sector