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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Big Brother intrusions

The Telegraph highlights why the current law on surveillance by local Councils and Government needs reforming when it reports that almost 1,000 innocent people have been wrongly spied on by the police, security services and town halls because of errors in “snooping” requests.

They say that two people were even arrested and wrongly accused of crimes they did not commit because officials wrote down incorrect details, a surveillance watchdog revealed. In addition a local council wrongly used snooping powers designed to combat crime to spy on a family it suspected of not living in the right school catchment area:

The figures will renew concerns over the Government plans to expand the amount of phone, email and internet information law enforcement and intelligence agencies can access.

Overall, police, security services and other public bodies made 494,078 requests to access data last year – the equivalent of 1,350 a day.

Sir Paul Kennedy, the Interception of Communications Commissioner, revealed that within that, there were just under 1,000 errors in applications for accessing phone or email data.

The mistakes were mainly wrong phone numbers or internet protocol (IP) addresses.

Two forces were given the wrong information by a communications service provider, which led to two people being wrongly detained and accused of crimes.

As Liberty comments, these errors show the dangers of Government plans to make phone and internet companies hold even more records on the communication and browsing habits of the whole population.

Whatever the reasons for holding information or surveillance, things do go wrong and innocent people have their privacy invaded and in some cases worse.
absolutely! One police officer deals with it in there way and records it and another takes a fresh look, recording things is wrong.....people in surveillance have to snoop on innocents to justify themselves
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