With the U.S., and its NSA in particular, increasingly in the spotlight over ignoring privacy issues, many companies and individuals are beginning to look to other countries for alternatives. Germany has always been an option, though it’s best to know the differences of each country before diving in.

Apple just revealed Germany’s conflicted attitude to privacy

The fact remains that Germany has built up a solid reputation as a vanguard for its citizens’ privacy. It has some of the harshest data protection rules in the world and was the first to go after Google for picking up Wi-Fi data while collecting imagery for its Street View project. Less well known is that the fine was lowered after Google shared the data with the government.

Switzerland is another country that is well known for its stance on privacy, but even with those measures in place, once your data crosses borders, the rules will change.

Swisscom builds ‘Swiss Cloud’ as spying storm rages

Yet while Swiss privacy laws will govern data stored locally in Switzerland, Swisscom says it is hard to guarantee the security of data that crosses borders, such as information exchanged by employees working in different countries.