Sunday 15 February 2009

British Liberty Dies Next Month

On March 15th the dream of British liberty dies.

On that day new laws from the EU-SSR come into force that require all ISP providers to store for a year a copy of all the e mails you send and recieve.

These laws add to ones that covered phone companies last year to record all details of who you call and that work alongside the existing Echelon interception system that records the contents of all your e mail you send ;

British liberty is now dead.

UK e-mail law 'attack on rights'

By Angus Crawford
BBC News

Service providers will have to store information for 12 months

Rules forcing internet companies to keep details of every e-mail sent in the UK are a waste of money and an attack on civil liberties, say critics.

From March all internet service providers (ISPs) will by law have to keep information about every e-mail sent or received in the UK for a year.

Human rights group Liberty says it is worried what will happen next.

The Home Office insists the data, which does not include e-mails' content, is vital for crime and terror inquiries.

Some three billion e-mails are thought to be sent each day in the UK.

Safe keeping

Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, said ISPs already kept the information on a voluntary basis.

"The thing we have to worry about is what happens next because the government is already mooting plans not just to leave this stuff with the providers but to create a central government database where they hold all the information.

"I'm afraid we just don't trust any government or any organisation to keep that much very sensitive information about us all and to keep it safe."


To keep details of every e-mail sent in the UK for a year

Internet Service Providers will have to record who sent the email, to whom and when

The e-mail's content will not be stored

Data can be accessed by more than 600 public bodies, such as the police and councils, if they make a valid request

Part of a European Commission directive

Critics of the new rules also include an association of internet service providers and computer experts.

Dr Richard Clayton, a security researcher at the University of Cambridge's computer lab, said the money could have been better spent.

He said:"There's going to be a record of every single e-mail which arrived addressed to you and all the e-mails you sent out via your ISP.

"That, of course, includes all the spam.

"I'd have liked to see more bobbies on an electronic beat investigating internet crimes.

"There are much better things to do to spend our billions on than snooping on everybody in the country just on the off-chance that they're a criminal."

The new rules are due to come into force on 15 March, as part of a European Commission directive which could affect every ISP in the country.

The firms will have to store the information and make it available to any public body which makes a lawful request, which could include police, local councils and health authorities.

To help set up the system the government may end up paying ISPs between £25m and £70m.

The rules already apply to telephone companies, which routinely hold much of the data for billing.

The Earl of Northesk, a Conservative peer on the House of Lords science and technology committee, said it meant anyone's movements could be traced 24 hours a day.

"This degree of storage is equivalent to having access to every second, every minute, every hour of your life," he said.

"People have to worry about the scale, the virtuality of your life being exposed to about 500 public authorities. The position as to what the ISPs are to do is not clear

Malcolm Hutty
London Internet Exchange

"Under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, privacy is a fundamental right... it is important to protect the principle of privacy because once you've lost it, it's very difficult to recover."

The Home Office said the data was a vital tool for investigation and intelligence gathering.

"It will allow investigators to identify suspects, examine their contacts, establish relationships between conspirators and place them in a specific location at a certain time.

"Implementing the EC directive will enable UK law enforcement to benefit fully from historical communications data in increasingly complex investigations and will enhance our national security."

'Better things'

But the industry itself has concerns about how the new rules will work.

Malcolm Hutty, from LINX (London Internet Exchange), a membership association for ISPs, said: "The position as to what the ISPs are to do is not clear."

He said on paper the law applied to all companies, but the Home Office has been saying informally that small ISPs would be exempt.

He said they were now left "in limbo", fearful of legal action if at some time in the future as the company became bigger, they were then expected to collect the data.

Reports have suggested the government has even bigger plans for data retention called the Interception Modernisation Programme.

It could involve one central database, gathering details on every text sent, e-mail sent, phone call made and website visited.

Consultation on the plans is due to begin later this year.


Government will spy on every call and e-mail
David Leppard

Ministers are considering spending up to £12 billion on a database to monitor and store the internet browsing habits, e-mail and telephone records of everyone in Britain.

GCHQ, the government’s eavesdropping centre, has already been given up to £1 billion to finance the first stage of the project.

Hundreds of clandestine probes will be installed to monitor customers live on two of the country’s biggest internet and mobile phone providers - thought to be BT and Vodafone. BT has nearly 5m internet customers.

Ministers are braced for a backlash similar to the one caused by their ID cards programme. Dominic Grieve, the shadow home secretary, said: “Any suggestion of the government using existing powers to intercept communications data without public discussion is going to sound extremely sinister.”
Related Links

* There’s no hiding place as spy HQ plans to see all

* First ID cards are to be issued within weeks

MI5 currently conducts limited e-mail and website intercepts which are approved under specific warrants by the home secretary.

Further details of the new plan will be unveiled next month in the Queen’s speech.

The Home Office stressed no formal decision had been taken but sources said officials had made clear that ministers had agreed “in principle” to the programme.

Officials claim live monitoring is necessary to fight terrorism and crime. However, critics question whether such a vast system can be kept secure. A total of 57 billion text messages were sent in the UK last year - 1,800 every second.

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alanorei said...

Beware the Ides of March.

Anonymous said...

And we (the Public) have to pay for this unwarranted level of state intrusion too- via higher service bills.

A bit like having to pay for the executioner's bullet really.

'War on Terror'?

More like an excuse for a 'War on Freedom'.

Anonymous said...

What's wrong with giving up a little privacy if it will stop criminals?

Anonymous said...

Lormarie said.

"What's wrong with giving up a little privacy if it will stop criminals?"

Perhaps that comment should state,

" What's wrong with giving up a little freedom if it will help a totalitarian state?"

You see, British citizens have been 'giving' up a 'little' bit of 'privacy' and a 'little' bit of freedom on a regular basis for at least a decade now, mostly directed by the totalitarian New Labour Party, aided and abetted by the whimsical, traitorous and gutless parties of both Conservative and Liberal Democrat.

It should be obvious by now by both British, American and other European citizens that the so-called 'War on Terror' is not all about combatting Muslim terrorism but equally - and more significantly - in eradicating our precious and fundamental liberties and freedom.

We British citizens are very partial to our liberties won through both revolution and struggle and our freedom-loving instincts will not be given up without a fight.

This is 21st-Century Britain, not the old East German Stasi state.

We shall not surrender our liberties to a state, whatever political hue it may represent, which embarces Orwellian totalitarianism.

And we shall not be so easily fooled like a significant number of US citizens who buy so easily into the 'War on Teror' programme (which in any case how do you actually fight 'terror', a terrorist yes, but 'terror'?), a deceptive scheme by an increasingly authoritian federal system to remove traditional US liberties and freedoms.

alanorei said...

Thanks, Mr Potter. It's the old story of the camel and the driver.

The infiltrator-camel has been at work a long time and he has almost taken over the tent.

To illustrate:

The Chatham House Director of Studies in the 1930s was Arnold Toynbee, ancestor of Polly, whom I once heard described as a "pc Commie bitch."

I would not attempt to disabuse anyone from holding that opinion.

Arnold Toynbee was committed to abolishing the nation states and setting up a one-world government. He said this in 1932, long before Common Purpose was actually called that.

“We are at present working discreetly but with all our might, to wrest…sovereignty out of the clutches of the local nation states of our world [“our” means him and his crowd of one-worlders, who had set up The League of Nations after WW1]. And all the time we are denying with our lips what we are doing with our hands [like Prescott professing to devolve power via regional assemblies], because to impugn the sovereignty of the nation states of this world is still a heresy for which a statesman or a publicist [journalist] can be ostracized and discredited.”

The above is taken from Britain Held Hostage, by Lindsay Jenkins, Orange Free Press, 1998, p 50ff.

Folk were more patriotic in 1932 than now. But WW2 broke out in 1939. A world war is the best way to weaken nations, as a first step to a one-world government. The UN was created after WW2. It is the next step towards global tyranny.

Everything the old gangsters do is aimed at weakening Britain so that she will eventually fall in lock-step with the rest of Europe as a gaggle of EU regions, represented by Brussels at the UN. Since most of the rest of the UN are anti-Brit (and anti-the US) anyway, they would perceive this devlopment as a major step forward.

The BNP is about all that stands in the way of this Toynbee-style objective. That is why the Party is attacked 24/7 by the rest of the 5th Column establishment, which is now most if not all of the establishment as such.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget the cost either of the Big Brother State.

The cost to the taxpayer of the New Stasi's surveillance society is estimated as least £34 billion.

That includes £634 milliom for the Contact-Point data base of school children (that's child snooping to you and me), £12 billiom for the Interception Modernisation programme to store emails, phone calls and visited websites, £7 billion for the ID Card and National Identity Register, and £12.7 billion for a computer system linking all patient health records.

And yet the idiots still can't stop Islamic terrorists from getting into and out of the country.

Makes you wonder if the country is getting real value for money, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Good comemnt Alanorei, you succinctly describe the reality of the situation and the malignancy of those dark forces arraigned against us - as well as all other nation states.

All that stands between global government and us are the myriad of litle nation states, all being held hostage by the throat by vast international organisations and multinationals.

Btw, thanks for the mention of the book Britain Held Hostage, by Lindsay Jenkins, Orange Free Press, 1998 - looks interesting.

Anonymous said...

It should be obvious by now by both British, American and other European citizens that the so-called 'War on Terror' is not all about combatting Muslim terrorism but equally - and more significantly - in eradicating our precious and fundamental liberties and freedom.--Mr. Potter

Respectfully, I think it's a bit of a stretch to say that the war on terror is about destroying individual freedoms, even if only in part. Both the UK and the US are societies that value individual freedom. What is probably happening is that certain freedoms are sacrificed for a 'greater good.' In other words, I don't believe the purpose is to take away individual rights. Admittedly, I'm only making an assumption about the UK since I don't live there.

I suspect that many more child predators will be stopped when your government implements email monitoring.

alanorei said...

Thanks Mr Potter

LJ has written a follow-up work called The Last Days of Britain and a further work on the destructive nature of Prescott's regional assemblies.

I've read the first of the above but not the second. However, all three works would be worth reading, I think, even if a bit dated now. Arguably, Arthur Kemp has taken over when Lindsay appears to have left off but the immigration invasion that he describes is a direct result of Britain's EU membership that LJ has researched in considerable depth.