UK government plans new law for the retention of all telecommunications data

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The Guardian newspaper reports (7.11.01) that the UK government plans to introduce a new law to require service and network providers to retain all telecommunications data (e-mails, faxes, phone-calls, mobile phone calls and internet usage) for the purpose of criminal investigations however minor.

In September the government introduction temporary (renewable each month) order requiring providers to retrain data for the purpose of investigating terrorist acts: earlier report

The Home Secretary, David Blunkett, went on record in the Tribune newspaper (26.10.01) saying that any new powers would "strictly" cover "a criminal investigations against suspected terrorists".

A Home Office official said that: "The data will be available for the full range of purposes list in the Act" (the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act).

Note: this story should perhaps carry a "health" warning. Last month government Ministers floated the idea of the imminent introduction of identity cards only to withdraw it after negative reactions. The above story has some of the same hall-marks.

For background to the discussion on the interception of telecommunications see: S.O.S. Europe

For Statewatch's clause by clause analysis of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act see: R.I.P.

Full-text of the Guardian report: Police to get sweeping access to net dat

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