Council of Europe establishes cooperation with DIGITAL SME for human rights and rule of law on the Internet

Today in Strasbourg, the European DIGITAL SME Alliance and the Council of Europe signed a cooperation to work together for democracy, human rights and the rule of law on the Internet. ‘Following today’s exchange of letters with the Council of Europe, small and medium sized digital companies once again demonstrate their commitment to society. Together with the global Internet companies, SMEs want to contribute to create a safer and more open online environment and to ensure the fundamental freedoms of every Internet user’ – said Oliver Grün President of the European DIGITAL SME Alliance.

The Council of Europe, which represents 47 member states, has invited the major business players – Internet companies and representative associations, to join efforts for an online space where human rights and the rule of law are respected. Besides DIGITAL SME, many global companies such as Facebook, Apple and Microsoft signed today their partnerships with the Council of Europe.

Today’s ceremonial exchange of letters has marked the beginning of cooperation that will concentrate on the initiatives such as actions upon cybercrime, protection of personal data, digital literacy and hate speech online.

Secretary General Sebastiano Toffaletti, who signed the partnership with the Council of Europe on behalf of DIGITAL SME, commented “I want to thank the Council of Europe for this initiative and for recognizing that not just global Internet companies, but also SMEs, play an important role on the Internet”.  

The exchange of letters was followed by the reception in the headquarters of the Council of Europe, meeting with the press, and bilateral meetings among the representatives of the governments, Internet companies and associations.







The Council of Europe is an international organisation in Strasbourg that was set up to promote democracy and protect human rights and the rule of law in Europe. It comprises 47 member states, 28 of which are also members of the European Union.







© Council of Europe
Cathérine Monfils




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