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internet-surveillance

Opponents of the Government’s plan to revive the twice failed Internet Snooping law, which would force ISPs into logging a much bigger slice of everybody’s online activity and also make it more accessible to security services, are crying foul after dirty politics resulted in 18 pages of new law being snuck into the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill (CTSB) at the last minute.. and without the promised judicial oversight (safeguard), according to Mark Jackson of technical website ISPreview (thanks to Helen Price for the heads-up).

The significant amendment was tabled in the House of Lords by former Metropolitan Police chief Lord Blair, with support from Lord Carlisle, Lord King and Lord West. Suffice to say that the text appears to be almost [the] image… of 2012’s rejected Communications Data Bill, which itself was a revival of Labour’s equally controversial Interception Modernisation Programme (IMP) several years earlier.

At present the existing law already requires broadband ISPs and telecoms firms, after receipt of a warrant, to maintain a very basic access log of the targeted customers online activity (times, dates and IP addresses) for a period of up to 12 months, which does NOT include the content of your communication and only occurs after a specific request is made to the ISP.

By comparison the new law wishes this to apply to everybody and to expand its remit into other fields, such as the monitoring of access/chats logs for popular online games and social networks, as well as Skype calls.

All of this has happened despite the coalition Government’s original pledge to “end the storage of internet and email records without good reason“, although clearly the interpretation of “good reason” differs for politicians as the new law would apply to everybody, irrespective of whether or not you’ve ever committed a crime (i.e. guilty, until proven innocent).

Needless to say that opponents of the old bill(s) and the ISP industry have reacted with disgust.

As a person who takes part in online activity, you’ll want to read the rest of this article, on ISPreview.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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