Hello, emergency laws to monitor your phones and internet use

10 July 2014

david cameron government Emergency laws are being brought in next week which will force phone and internet companies to hold records of customers’ calls, texts and visits to websites.

Sounds dodgy doesn't it? How can a government do something like that? Well, Cameron & Co. have wheeled out the usual excuse of terrorism. See, if the government can snoop on everyone, that'll stop someone from listening to God and blowing themselves up.

Obviously.

According to Cameron, these fast-tracked measures are absolutely necessary to defend our national security against the threat from Iraq and Syria. If we don't, the consequences are "grave." This move is a response to a ruling by the European Court of Justice which struck down regulations that allowed communications companies from storing data for police use for a year. Downing Street reckons that we're all doomed if phone and internet companies start deleting these records.

"It is the first duty of government to protect our national security and to act quickly when that security is compromised,” David Cameron said. "As events in Iraq and Syria demonstrate, now is not the time to be scaling back on our ability to keep our people safe. The ability to access information about communications and intercept the communications of dangerous individuals is essential to fight the threat from criminals and terrorists targeting the UK. No government introduces fast track legislation lightly. But the consequences of not acting are grave."

"I want to be very clear that we are not introducing new powers or capabilities – that is not for this Parliament. This is about restoring two vital measures ensuring that our law enforcement and intelligence agencies maintain the right tools to keep us all safe."

Nick Clegg, a man hired to wander around Whitehall to say 'does anything need doing? No? Okay. Fancy a pint after? You're busy? Never mind then', said these emergency laws "will not be used as an excuse for more powers, or for a ‘snooper’s charter’."

"Liberty and security must go hand in hand. We can’t enjoy our freedom if we’re unable to keep ourselves safe."

Tom Watson, meanwhile, isn't impressed and said on the radio this morning that this is a "stitch up" that denies MPs the chance to be able to scrutinise the legislation: "This is a secret deal between party leaders. There hasn't been a bill published, we find out this morning when Parliament is on a one-line whip and MPs are in their constituencies that next week they will railroad through emergency legislation."

"If you are an MP, you probably shouldn't bother turning up for work next week because what you think doesn't really matter. They are ramping up the rhetoric on it but no one in civic society has a chance to form a view on this or lobby their MP or talk to them about it. I understand that Labour's shadow cabinet is seeing it this morning. They've not had a chance to think about it yet."

Cue: If you're not doing anything wrong, it doesn't matter arguments.

TOPICS:   Privacy   Technology   Government

7 comments

  • patrick
    For browsing privacy from the UK government go to https://torproject.org/ and download the Tor Browser - at least then they can't record what you're doing.
  • jim
    one step closer to 1984 and a police state. fuck all politicians
  • Sparky
    Not that I am a coalition apologist or anything, but it should be noted that ALL parties support this legislation. Labour support it as well as the coalition. And it only restores powers that they already had but which, due to a technicality, meant that the data retention may have lapsed. Hello? Is this thing on.....?
  • DragonChris
    Welcome to China.
  • Big B.
    Government secret services have been doing this for years, now they want to justify it. Hasn't anyone seen Enemy of the State? Watch and learn... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R90vWtcHLlE
  • jim
    all parties cant support this as they havent read it yet. so they are supporting something they havent read the details of. what an absolute joke. democracy and freedom are just a load of bolocks now. we are just slaves to the rich and powerfull few - they know unrest is coming soon - when the oil runs out/gets too expensive. so they put these measures in to control us. also they been spying on us illegally for years - this is their get out of jail card grrr - it really grinds my gears.
  • Big M.
    Why do we need to do this? According to Cameron - Terrorists, Paedophiles and Fraudsters. Scared yet?

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