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Description of UK’s Snooper’s Charter

In Big Brother, News, NWO, Other Leaks, Police State, Science & Technology on December 26, 2012 at 5:55 PM



Civil liberties campaigners have described the controversial proposals by the British government included in the Communications Data Bill as the Snooper’s Charter, because they believe the draft bill is a significant threat to people’s privacy.

The measures mark a serious increase in the powers the UK government has to order any communications provider to collect, store and provide access to information about emails, online conversations and texts.

The draft Bill contains three parts. The first section creates a new power to order companies to collect specific datasets and deploying any technical or policy changes needed to do so. Moreover, it requires the information to be retained in a confidential manner for one year and destroyed after this period passes. This kind of power can be used by any principal secretary of state, but in practice would be the Home Secretary.

The second part of the bill devises a system for assorted public bodies to get access to the data, including filtering arrangements.

The third section changes the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), repeals all other existing powers that involve retaining and disclosing communications data, and gives the Information Commissioner, the Interception of Communications Commissioner, and the Investigatory Powers Tribunal the responsibility for scrutinizing the implementation of these powers.

However, the bill gives the UK government broad powers to order any communications provider to collect and disclose communications data by any means. It is also most likely to involve black boxes being installed on ISPs networks, which will enable relevant government bodies to have access to communications data. That represents a fundamental shift to general mass surveillance of the population outsourced to the private sector. In fact, the proposals will lead to the creation of a database of a wide range of information about people’s communications.

The bill is not an update of existing powers, as the data generated through the use of services like Facebook, Google and Twitter reveals far more about people than their phone records.

In addition, it will be too easy to access the data, as it simply requires designated senior officers at those bodies to believe that it’s “necessary to obtain the data” and that it is “proportionate to what is sought to be achieved”. It means that there will be no external and direct oversight of access requests, increasing the risk to be ripe for abuse and exploitation. The phone hacking scandal shows that the ability to access personal information will be exploited for a variety of reasons.

The bill’s clauses on “filtering” appear to be applied to identifying data related to an individual from a query across datasets or databases. However, the technical ability to search and identify people will go further. For example, the data could identify a protester who posts to a radical politics site, his location at any given time and his favored contacts. The data could in effect be used to monitor political activity to a finely grained level.

There may be some possible sources for a leak of confidential data in the public interest. Comparing the individuals that might leak data with the journalist publishing the story’s contact details would reveal the likely leaker. But in the draft bill, there are no means to restrict such queries and requests. Such judgments would be made only by the police.

The British government needs to explain who it is that does not currently have access to what information, and explain who need these new powers and why. It is not enough to simply say that the police need this information to solve serious crimes. Furthermore, while the government estimates that the scheme will cost £1.8bn, there is little to substantiate the figure.

The question is what happens when a business or email system encrypts data in transit. Home Office officials claim that they will be able to break encryption, but this seems unlikely. If true, it would threaten the security of the Internet economy. If they are wrong, and their systems will not break encryption, then the system will lose value as more and more data is encrypted for people’s safety and security.

Related Link: “Black Boxes” to Monitor All Internet & Phone Data in UK

Facebook Pushes Privacy Limits with New Mobile Ads

In Big Brother, News, NWO, Other Leaks, Science & Technology on July 10, 2012 at 8:29 AM




Facebook will launch a second mobile ad product which will serve ads to users based on which other apps they’ve downloaded onto their phones—raising concerns over privacy, according to the Wall Street Journal:

… ads for apps directly in a users’ News Feed on their mobile devices, whether the consumer has noted an interest in that company or not,

Facebook engineers have built technology that lets the company track what apps people have on their phones and target ads based on that information, these people said.

Previously, Facebook largely served ads keyed by users’ own preferences, friends, and their Likes. Sponsored stories, for instance, Facebook’s first mobile ad product, serves ads triggered by users’ brand mentions in their status updates.

“Black Boxes” to Monitor All Internet & Phone Data in UK

In News, NWO, Other Leaks, Police State, Science & Technology, Viral Videos on June 30, 2012 at 4:16 PM



Internet and phone firms are preparing to install “black boxes” to monitor UK internet and phone traffic, and decode encrypted messages – including Facebook and GMail messages.


As part of the Home Office’s communications data bill, internet service providers (ISPs) and mobile phone companies will be obliged to collect communications records and keep them for a year.

The government has insisted that the actual content of messages won’t be stored, but until now it has not been clear how communications companies will be able to separate content from “header data”, such as the sender and recipient of a message, and the date it was sent.

It has now emerged that the Home Office has held meetings with the UK’s largest ISPs and mobile network operators, and has given them information about the hardware which companies will have to use to monitor traffic flowing through their systems.

When an individual uses a webmail service such as Gmail, for example, the entire webpage is encrypted before it is sent. This makes it impossible for ISPs to distinguish the content of the message. Under the Home Office proposals, once the Gmail is sent, the ISPs would have to route the data via a government-approved “black box” which will decrypt the message, separate the content from the “header data”, and pass the latter back to the ISP for storage.


Dominic Raab, a Conservative MP who has criticised the bill, said: “The use of data mining and black boxes to monitor everyone’s phone, email and web-based communications is a sobering thought that would give Britain the most intrusive surveillance regime in the west. But, many technical experts are raising equally serious doubts about its feasibility and vulnerability to hacking and other abuse.”

A representative of the ISPs Association said: “We understand that government wants to move with the times, and we want to work with them on that. But this is a massive project. We’d rather they told us what they want to achieve, then sit down with us to work out how.”

“Our other main concern with this is speed. If you’re having to route all traffic through one box, it’s going to cut down on connection speeds. The hardware can only look at a certain amount of traffic per second – if lots of streams from the BBC iPlayer are going through it, for example, how is it going to handle the traffic?”

A Home Office spokesman said –

“We have not issued any hardware or software specifications.

“The communications data bill is designed to allow the police to maintain their capability to catch criminals and protect the public as technology changes and people use more modern communications. Under this programme the emphasis is to work with industry to determine the best way to achieve this.

“The legislation is currently being scrutinised by parliament. Once it has been passed will we work with companies on how to best collect and store communications data, but not the content.”

WWW Inventor Warns Against Web Snooping Bill

Inventor of the world wide web Tim Berners-Lee, says the extension of the state’s surveillance powers would be a “destruction of human rights.”


EU Email and Web Use to Be Monitored Under New Laws

Ever tighter controls appear to be placed on European Union Citizens, as the new Data Retention Directive- or DRD- allows the police liberties with the public’s privacy in the name of Anti Terrorism efforts.

The measure does not end there however, as text messages, are also a target… and even more concerning is the tracking of your cell phone allowing the authorities to create a movement grid, knowing your patterns day in day out… But one of the architects of a movement growing to take a motion to Austria’s constitutional court, believes the EU has bitten off more than it can.


The voices appear to be unanimous on this point, saying the EU is only wasting taxpayer’s Euros when it can be spent on the much needed recovery…. and not placing more burdens on already heavy shoulders of an economically stressed Eurozone…

Austria has however had one up on the situation… the author of the central european country’s version has placed provisions that require the police to notify someone if they are being monitored, and there will be a 1 year evaluation among other conditions… inspite of this… citizens are fighting back hard, to bring the motion to Constitutional Court… to rid Austria of the DRD for good…

The Data Retention Directive already appears to be in trouble with Constitutional Courts like that of the Czech Republic, ruling the act UNconstitutional… and bigger EU members like Germany finding no legal reason to have the law around… the picture becomes clearer. What Austria’s Constitutional Court will rule on the DRD once the motion is heard, will see whether or not the Government will have the legal right to spy on its people.

Related Links:

Description of UK’s Snooper’s Charter

UK Online “Pirates” Face £20 Appeal Fee Under New Proposals

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