back to article Home Sec: Web snoop law will snare PAEDOS, TERRORISTS

The Home Secretary has defended her department's decision to resurrect net-snooping plans that were abandoned by the previous Labour government in 2009. Theresa May, writing in The Sun, finally put forward her opinion two days after the tabloid's sister paper – The Sunday Times – ran a story containing a small amount of …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Remember, the Serious Organised Crime Agency are now concentrating on copyright enforcement. This whole system makes more sense with that in mind.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SOCA

      International smuggling of counterfeit goods and money laundering - that's what's being investigated. It's not quite as trivial as the word 'copyright' would imply

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: SOCA

        The fact that gangs can make a tidy profit manufacturing and selling fake Nike trainers down the local market (enough the require the money to be laundered to avoid notice) is probably more an indication of how much these things are overpriced in the first place, not of the severity of this kind of intellectual property 'theft'. Given that cheap 'fake' clothing is not likely to be of a hugely lower quality than the 'real' thing, but can be made and sold much more cheaply, the big brand names have only their own greed to blame for this sort of thing and get none of my sympathy.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: SOCA

          Not sure why I'm down voted on this. Please explain

          That's what SOCA is investigating, that and the likes of Lulzsec etc.

          The gangs that create fake trainers are getting their cash from somewhere - higher up the criminal chain to racketeers and large organised crime set ups etc

          The problem isn't just related to the local market seling trainers. Crime is highly organised and and global in nature.

          I have little sympathy for manufacturers of the 'real thing either'.

          However this is off topic and shouldn't be discussed here

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: SOCA

        why aren't SOCA also looking at the "privacy-right' of the citizens, who might sometimes be accused of the civil infringement of something to do with 'copy-right'. Rights seem to be equal and diametrically opposed - but only one side is being enforced or contemplated to be enforced?

        only might is right? Mickey-Mouse with his billion$ is more important than the millions who wish to enforce their privacy-right? The internet in many cases just used as a time shifting PVR. Bring ultraviolet to the UK immediately and that will solve copy-right faster than SOCA!


  2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

    Paedophiles and Terrorists are varieties of criminal

    As such, they should be handled in the same way we handle all other criminals:

    - By the police.

    - With oversight from the courts.

    - Not by some sort of super-secret intelligence service led star chamber.

    In a criminal investigation, if someone falls under reasonable suspicion and the police wish to tap their communications or enter their premises to gather evidence, a warrant is required. I can see the argument that such warrants should not be public knowledge between the times that they are granted and when they are carried out. However, a record should be available of the existence of a warrant, and the details of the warrant SHOULD be public after it has expired. This is called accountability and is vital to any properly functioning democracy.

    Terrorism and paedophilia arguably pose less of a threat than other day-to-day hazards such as crossing the road. They are, however, emotive and can thus be used to manipulate the public through their fears. Anyone doing so should fall immediately under suspicion. I'm looking at you, Theresa May. Well done to David Davis for having the balls to stand up to this nonsense. We can only hope that this does not make it into law. This sort of authoritarianism was precisely why many of us hated the previous government so much. not because we were doing anything wrong, but because of the sheer wrong-headedness of the 'nothing to hide nothing to fear' and 'innocent until proven guilty' mentality.

    1. ridley

      Re: Paedophiles and Terrorists are varieties of criminal

      "However, a record should be available of the existence of a warrant, and the details of the warrant SHOULD be public after it has expired."

      I really hope that you do not mean that.

      I was falsely arrested and a search warrent used to search my house/business and after a thorough investigation and no evidence having been found (of course not I had not done anything) the case was dropped.

      Should details of the warrant used be public knowledge then?

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: Paedophiles and Terrorists are varieties of criminal

        If a record is available of all warrants, along with a record of the suspects innocence, in this case yours, this then shines a light on the granting of inappropriate warrants. It does show that you were under suspicion, so there is an argument for the names and addressess of innocent parties to be removed from the public record. The alternative is to have this sort of thing unregulated. If someone is falsely accused, but there is no record of why, or by whom, then nobody is accountable, and this sort of thing will continue without any checks and balances.

    2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Paedophiles and Terrorists are varieties of criminal

      "Well done to David Davis for having the balls to stand up to this nonsense. "

      He's one of the few Conservatives with enough of an IT background to spot the BS for what it is.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Now, more than ever...

    El Reg needs a .onion server.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Creeping already

    The BBC quotes the Information Commissioner thus:

    "The information commissioner said public bodies not involved in dealing with serious crime or national security, such as the Department for Work and Pensions, should have to apply to a court before access was granted."

    I would have been more encouraged if he had said "...will be told to fuck off".

    The root of my objection to this whole concept is the certainty that access will be provided beyond the spooks and the serious crime plods to the public sector in general, and he has just confirmed it for me.

    Still, the HSec did say "when parliamentary time allows", so maybe they've realised it was a mistake

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh FFS

    Jesus, yet another stupid waste of time. We have a government that cannot ensure even the essentials of daily life can be supplied - to wit last weeks fuss over fuel, that does not have a strategy for growth as evidenced by the recent budget which to quote the CBI was a political budget not one to grow the economy, and that lost control of law and order in many cities last summer.

    There are so many things wrong with Ms May's proposals that I don't know where to start. Apart from the loss of freedoms from this proposal (which should be reason enough to can this) this is just a total waste of my money. The government should concentrate on shrinking itself and shrinking my taxes, not taking lessons from the Stasi about state surveillance. W*nkers.

  6. a cynic writes...

    In other news the BBC are reviving "Yes Minister"

    For those not old enough to have seen it it's the tale of an ineffectual insecure politician being governed by his civil servants.

    Can't think what reminded me...

  7. Eponymous Cowherd

    Home Sec: Web snoop law will snare PAEDOS, TERRORISTS


    Really, really, really really, really mind bogglingly STUPID ones.

    The rest will know they are being watched and take the simple steps needed to avoid it.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Eat this.

    sex with children.


    plant bombs in London.

    Praise Allah.

    The IRA


    Long Live Bin Laden

    Pakistan, China.

    Training Camps.







    There that give then to trawl.

    I propose the whole of the UK batters the web and emails with keywords likely to set off an alert.

    May 28th - International Amenesty Day.

    1. Citizen Kaned

      Re: Eat this.

      haha... like it.

      i might just add that at the bottom of our exchange emails, either in the data or white text ;) you know, just for the lulz! :)

    2. Miek

      Re: Eat this.


  9. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    Of course, the Communications Capabilities Development Programme (CCDP) was relabeled from the Communications Capabilities Consolidation Programme (CCCP)

  10. Christoph Silver badge

    The Usual Trick

    Look at this extreme example! That obviously means we have to watch *everybody* so we can stop this kind of thing!

    Ridiculous over-reaction.

    How long will it be before in every court case the defendant's web and email history gets scanned to find juicy things that can be produced in court?

    Oh, and your web history of course lists lots of sites that you never knew you were accessing, including all sorts of advertising pop-ups and similar.

    In fact it would be very easy for the prosecution to check which sites you access regularly, and see if they can sneak some code onto one of them that accesses terrorist and/or paedophile sites without you knowing. Then wave that in court as absolute proof that you must be a criminal!

  11. david willis

    If its in the news for a week.

    There's a saying that if a politician drops the ball, and that story rolls on in the media for a week, then a politicians head will roll.

    The current fuss about monitoring the internet, panic buying petrol etc seems to have completely ovewhelmed the story of the week. The conservative party, for an amount of £ would let you talk to the PM and maybe get your agenda implimented as government policy. This is corruption. At the Highest levels. We seem to have forgotten this in all the hogwash that has happened in the last 7 days.

    PS we already do monitor comms, however the agency / groups doing the monitoring need a court order to do it. Whats the problem with this? too much paperwork to get 60 million court orders?, apple probably have an app for that..

  12. gaz 7
    Big Brother

    no big database

    but how big can excel spreadsheets get?

    This is obviously a MI/Police thing - since they thought it was a bad idea when in opposition then why doesnt dave go a pair and tell them to do one!

    And this all kind implies that we are all under suspection all the time, and by assocaition are all suspected paedos and terrorists - not nice!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: no big database

      We are all under suspicion all the time

  13. Mycho Silver badge

    Because it's always better to go after peadophiles and terrorists without a warrant.

  14. Daniel Bower

    The following statement is a joke - I repeat a joke

    Everytime I see Teresa May I'm reminded of Monty Python and the Holy Grail

    She's a witch - Burn her!

    How do you know she's a witch?

    She looks like one...

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

      Re: The following statement is a joke - I repeat a joke

      Teresa May channels Jacqui Smith.

      It's not pretty.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Here we go yet another round of we need to see what you are doing, but not the other way around. I thought it was the government that represented the people, but it seems politicians forget this. On their way into power they scream murder about the erosion of civil liberties then once in .....

    So if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to worry about? OK so why was all that black ink over the "full disclosure" during the expenses claim scandal? Official secrets? They are OK? It's just the unofficial ones then?

  16. LinkOfHyrule

    This is all like an episode of Yes Minister, if Yes Minister was shit. Shit Minister?

    Also, "Home Sec"...? Is that the DIY division of Lulzsec or something?

  17. The BigYin

    Think of the children?

    I do think of the children. I want the children to grow up in a society that respects freedom, where the public are free to question their the government and hold it to account, where it is hard (nay, impossible) for the state to prevent corruption being brought to the fore, where freedom of speech (by any means), and movement are sacrosanct.

    And instead of this we are allowing a world to be created where every aspect of a child's life is indexed, monitored, controlled and a request for privacy taken as an admission of guilt.

    A corrupt, secretive and snooping government is of more threat to children than all the paedos and terrorists in the world multiplied together.

    And, as others have said, all this will do is cause those of us with some level of technical prowess to engage in active encryption/blocking, educate others on how to do so and create the tools to make it even easier so that everyone can protect their privacy. Tools which, unfortunately, could be used by others with less noble goals.

    This law will CREATE even more of the problems it seeks to solve.

    This law is wrong.

    Theresa May is wrong.

    The ConDems are wrong, Labour was wrong.

    Our entire government and the EU are wrong; they are no longer fit-for-purpose.

    Kick the people hard and often enough, they will kick back in time; it is never a clean fight, regardless of who triumphs. Read some history.

  18. Tony S

    Where to start?

    Part of the issue is that we don't yet know exactly what is going to be in the proposed legislation - it might not be as bad as we think. (Which of course also means that it could be far worse)

    It's easy to complain in Internet forums or use Twitter to make various comments, but those things are unlikely to have any real impact especially given that most MPs appear to be so technologically naive.

    I'm certainly going to write to my MP (letter is about half way through) and highlight my concerns; I will also send a copy to the Home Office, although I think that they will do little good. But then once the details are available, I will write again to challenge all of the key points that they make. If they get enough letters they may start to take notice (or they may just ignore us plebs). But at least I know that I will have done something to try to stop this godawful plan.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. JimmyPage Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        What have you missed ...

        A FALSE NEGATIVE could result in a real atrocity.

        1. Thoguht Silver badge

          Re: What have you missed ...

          This is what we call "the price of freedom".

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward


            He who sacrifices freedom for security deserves neither...

            1. Thoguht Silver badge

              Re: @Thoguht

              Obviously I didn't check my ambiguometer before posting! What I meant was that the possibility that under-monitoring might allow an atrocity is the price of freedom. You can't have freedom and security, and anyone who tells you otherwise is a liar.

            2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
              Thumb Up

              Re: @Thoguht

              "He who sacrifices freedom for security deserves neither..."

              A *lot* of people had this on their sig post 9/11.

              Important to remember this one.

        2. JimmyPage Silver badge

          Re: What have you missed ...

          OK, why the downvotes ?

        3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
          Thumb Down

          Re: What have you missed ...

          "A FALSE NEGATIVE could result in a real atrocity."

          Or as Stalin put it "Better a 100 innocent men go to jail than one guilty man goes free."

          Current thinking is Stalin's character was psychopathic.

          So in fact the only person who *should* have been locked up was Stalin.

  19. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    Theresa May does not understand us

    Paedophiles and terrorists are not scary any more. If she wants to cause enough fear to get dangerous legislation passed, she should threaten us with bankers.

  20. Anonymous Coward

    PAEDOS == Bogeyman Of The Cyber-Industrial Complex

    Yeah, we urgently need to sell overpriced harddisks, flash drives, FPGAs, an assortment of software and super-overpriced consulting services.

    Otherwise your little sweet kid will be fiddled by the PAEEEDDOO !!!!!

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

      Re: PAEDOS == Bogeyman Of The Cyber-Industrial Complex

      You forgot the Deep Packet Inspection kit those nice men from Dettica (BAe Systems subsidiary, and whose parent companies CEO enjoys unlimited access to the PM) who are *very* keen to outfit all those ISP machine rooms with their top of the line spiffy hardware.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lord High Chancellor Cameron

    Well when does he get the new title?

    Anon as twas the only way to get the right icon.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No chance of this happening.

    I doubt this will ever happen in the UK, the condemnation seems to be universal.

    One thing for certain, if they tried it in Poland the government would be out of office and hounded to death for eternity. The Poles have had this sort of **** in the past and they know what it means.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No chance of this happening.

      Apparently Poland actually has the worst record for surveillance on its citizens:,Poles-still-under-watchful-eye-of-Big-Brother

  23. Camilla Smythe Silver badge


    Who put Vanessa Felz in charge of the home office?

  24. ACx

    When you want to treat your population like criminal scum just mention two words :



    Job done.

    But what does my head is is that we all know this, right? So the hell do they get away with it? Why do "we" let it happen? The majority of people will just sit there and do nothing to oppose it.

    I do think we in the UK need to wake up and smell the coffee. This is not a Tory or Labour thing, the last government wanted to implement this and dropped it. Now this government is having a go.

    And what is it about politicians that makes them see us as some sort of enemy? Both do it. Why do they act like we don't have a democracy?

    Honestly, what have we done to the establishment to make the hate us so much?

  25. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    Sauce for the goose...

    I put in an FOI request to the Home Office a couple of days ago asking for a list of all web sites visited by the Home Secretary in the last 12 months, together with the e-mail addresses of everyone e-mail she has sent/received. I'm sure they'll happily supply it - she has nothing to hide.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sauce for the goose...

      FOI: whilst looking through the 3GPP website (standards for UMTS/3G telephones) I was amused to find a report on telephone surveillance discussions - one particular standards development email which mentioned that "as Holland has just passed the WOB (freedom of information law) we are now moving these discussions to an encrypted mailing list"

      that wonderfully sums-up the whole concept behind FOI (a law for selling shredders!?)

  26. Magnus_Pym

    Is it even possible?

    Doesn't all this rely on the ISP being able to track users email and web access? I wonder if there is any money to made from some kind of encrypted forwarding service.

  27. IDoNotThinkSo

    The neighbours unencrypted wifi just got more tempting ;-)


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