What effect could the ‘Snooper’s Charter’ have?
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I've written a number of blogs on this subject starting here; http://www.zen.co.uk/blog/the-communications-bill/ and I've been working with ISP's and others such as the Internet Service Providers Association on this since it started.
The Bill has far reaching consequences not only for our industry but every single internet user in this country.
The intention is for Law Enforcement and other government agencies to have access to more information than they currently have by means of Communications Providers retaining data for a period of 12 months. This would include social networking data such as Facebook, Twitter and others. They are only interested in who sent what to who, at what time etc. but I'm not convinced of that longer term as scope creep is a reality.
It's a long and complex discussion and one that has far from died down.
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The Draft Communications Data Bill – or ‘Snooper’s Charter’ as it’s better known – has been a big deal in the UK recently. The proposed bill could record your every text, phone call, and email – if it actually goes through.
Notable for uniting both the right and left wing in criticising it (if for totally different reasons), a cross-party decision about the charter found it was ‘ill-considered, expensive and dangerous’. But that’s not the end of it. The Home Office still want something ‘which will provide the law enforcement agencies with some further access to communications data’ – so what does that mean?
Well, it means they’re aiming to monitor everything that everyone does, whether they’re under suspicion of something or not. So, your child could grow up with every text, email, or Facebook status they send being logged by the government, which is both a huge undertaking and, in my view a totally unnecessary invasion of privacy. Why would they need to do that? Can they justify it? And will an increasingly tech-savvy generation of young voters even allow it to happen?
To play Devil’s/Theresa May’s advocate, both old and new forms of communication are being used to coordinate pretty despicable things. But that doesn’t really warrant tapping the phone of every house in Britain, does it?