.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Friday, November 30, 2012

Opposing the snooper's charter

Amongst all the controversy about Leveson and the Welsh Government seeking to censor Pobl y Cwm, another piece of important news slipped out yesterday that may have even greater repercussions for the future of the Coalition Government.

The Independent reports that controversial moves to give sweeping new powers to the police and security services to monitor phone, email and internet use are set to be opposed by Nick Clegg.

The paper says that the Deputy Prime Minister is expected to veto the draft Communications Data Bill, which has been denounced by critics as a “snooper’s charter”:

Theresa May, the Home Secretary, insists the moves are essential to keep track of terrorists and major criminals that are increasingly using Skype, email and social networks to evade the authorities. It wants the new powers to be in place by 2014.

But an all-party group of MPs and peers scrutinising the draft Bill will list a series of serious criticisms of the plans in a report next month. One Whitehall source said: “The committee is becoming more sceptical.”

It will accuse the Home Office of failing to make a “compelling case” for the proposals, which it warns could infringe civil liberties and create a pool of confidential information that could be open to abuse.

The committee will also warn of the potential cost to telecommunications companies and internet service providers from having to store the required data for 12 months.

Sources close to the committee are understood to believe the Bill cannot survive in its current form and may have to be dropped altogether.

Given the enthusiasm of the Home Office for this legislation this could lead to yet another confrontation behind the doors of number 10. And quite rightly so.


Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?