back to article Surveillance response 'inadequate', say Lords

The Government's response to a Parliamentary report on the monitoring and legislation surrounding surveillance is "inadequate" and it has "paid insufficient attention" to the report's recommendations, a follow up report has said. The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution produced a report earlier this year which …


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  1. Jimmy Floyd

    Parliamentary oversight

    Is this the same government that has been trying to reduce the power of the House of Lords since they formed in 1997? That line about "the Commons being the will of the people" doesn't ring so true now, 'init?

  2. M A Walters

    Sad time

    It is a very sad time we live in, where we have to rely on unelected Lords to protect our freedoms yet again. I suppose because they are life peers and they cannot get kicked out of the House of Lords, they can vote with their conscience, as opposed to whipped MPs in Commons who need to protect their political career.

  3. dunncha
    Thumb Down

    A little confused here

    I feel this article is suggesting their is a split between the Government and the House of Lord's. Doesn't the Government listen to anybody else.

    Does Sir Alan know that his recommendations will be completely ignored.... I guess that why he was able to keep his job on 'The Apprentice'. His appointment is a completely token move and the laws will be written by lobbyists on the payroll of large business's.

    There you go... confusion cleared up.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    In Other News...

    Quote: "Manchester City Council has been rapped over the knuckles for the loss of two laptops containing sensitive personal information on teachers and workers at local schools."

    Soon there wont be any "personal" data left coz these muppets & their policy, most of it will be in the public domain, that is, unless of course you are an MP, in which case a pack of BIG Black marker pens is all you need to "protect" their privacy, expensed of course....

    /rant off

  5. h4rm0ny
    Paris Hilton

    Oh what a country we live in...

    ...where I approve of the unelected toffs who try to protect me from the elected ministers who want to treat us like cattle.

    Paris, because the Lords deserve a treat for their sterling work.

  6. A B 3

    The (Good) Houses

    Queensland (state of Australia) disbanded their upper house. They have been screwing the Qld economy ever since. Plus they no longer have true representation.

    I know how anal-retentive the senate can be, but they also intercept bad laws. Worth every penny (and then some) I say.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Once again we are reminded

    of the point of a bicameral legislature. The whole point of the Lords is that they are unelected and there for life, so they can see things in the longer term, unlike the Commons, where they are only thinking to the next election, or possibly the one after that if they have already left the country in such a state that they won't get reelected next time. Not that that would happen, of course.

    The thing that should concern us is that the lower house resists oversight so strongly - this bears the hallmarks of a power-grab which is not desirable for the populace. Ironically, there has been much talk of reform of the Lords, whereas the reform should occur in the Commons instead. Their seeming culture of secrecy and resistance to regulation should worry us all.

    AC, and black helicopters because I'd rather be paranoid than a 'terror suspect', held without trial for the next couple of months...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Is it really so surprising?

    The Lords are appointed. They dont need to worry about getting re-elected or honoring agreements made to their masters in big business or in the US.

    Both houses know as a nation we will be safer, happier and better with more freedom but money and power gets in the way.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    "The Government rejected most of the report's recommendations and claimed that its current and planned policies give an effective balance between personal privacy and state security."

    Yep, that's all I needed the gov to confirm, thanks!

    I recently went to a school fete, they had coppers there, kids playing with the car, the sirens, looking the tools on display, the coppers were also collecting kids samples of DNA and finger prints to show what they collect and why. I instantly whipped out the tin-foil hat and refused to let my kids get swabbed and printed, even if it may have been all a bit of fun, it was still very unnerving. In 3 years of going to my kid's fetes and this is the first time I have seen then doing this. Call me paranoid, but you never know who's out to get you or your family!

  10. Dr. Mouse Silver badge

    Slight alteration

    "the increasing monitoring of citizens was breaking the bond of trust between the Government and the people"

    replace with

    "the increasing and already overwhelmingly intrusive monitoring of citizens is further damaging the already tattered mess of any remaining trust between the Goverment and the people"

    I don't think there is ANYTHING that they could do, even if they wanted to, to regain my trust. This applies equally to all parties.

  11. Jon Thompson 2
    Thumb Down

    What do you expect?

    Our government is hell-bent on watching us in ever more detail. The question is why. Is it to protect us ...or to protect them?

  12. Graham Marsden
    Thumb Down

    The Government rejected most of the report's recommendations....

    ... saying they didn't give a toss!

  13. Richard 75

    The Government

    "The Government have paid insufficient attention to a number of fundamental points and criticisms made in the Report."

    The Government paid no attention to a recommendation!?!? THIS HAS NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE! THIS MIGHT BRING THE GOVERNMENT INTO DISREPU... oh.

    -- Richard

  14. Jonathan Richards 1

    Ooh! Ooh! I know this one!

    "Versions of PIA differ in terms of the stringency of their requirements. ... further details of the nature of the PIA to be undertaken in each case, and how and by whom it will be evaluated, have not been provided."

    My team is introducing PIAs into a substantial chunk of a big department of state, and we're quite clear that there's only one version of the PIA, and it's the one promulgated by the ICO. You can choose a small scale or full scale assessment, but the criteria for that choice are clear. We're also clear about who evaluates it, and how we've integrated PIAs into the wider security documentation. My conclusion is that, at ground level, you'll find people are trying to do the right thing. Those cameras point at me and you, and my details are in the databases, too.

  15. Jon Thompson 2
    Thumb Up


    Next May, get up early, go to a polling station AND VOTE FOR SOMEONE ELSE!

  16. Mike Richards

    Well that's the Lords signing their death warrant

    Acting independently like this is the best way of persuading New Labour to bring about a 100% elected Lords.

    Imagine the horror - this government was voted in by about a quarter of the eligible electorate with a crushing majority in the Commons. Had the Lords been elected at the same time there would have been nothing to stop or moderate their illiberal legislation.

  17. Ed Blackshaw Silver badge


    The last time I got up and went to a polling booth (just a few weeks ago as it happens), I was dismayed to find that all the names on the ballot papers were those of politicians, and I could not 'VOTE FOR SOMEONE ELSE!'. As it turns out, I had to vote for one of them, or not at all...

  18. 3x2

    From the 97 manifesto

    "Open government"

    "Unnecessary secrecy in government leads to arrogance in government and defective policy decisions."

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I don't understand why anyone wants to keep it private anyway

    This is what my MP said to me when I quizzed him about keeping private data private at the local village fete on Saturday. In case you were wondering, he is a Labour member.

  20. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Down

    That Government response in full

    We know who you are.

    We know where you live.

    We know who you talk to.

    We know what you read on your computer.

    Your opinion is irrelevant.

  21. King Edward I

    Better Solution...

    Next april, get someone to nominate you and drop a £500 deposit, canvess and GET YOURSELF ELECTED TO PARLIAMENT. Then sort it out! (Grenade, 'cos that's the alternative!)

  22. Florence Stanfield
    Thumb Down

    Good Job the House of Lords have principles

    Thank god the house of Lords have some scrupples left and not as paraniod as this government.

    Time for an election don't think Labour will be back in a rush tghey have totaly lost the plot.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    vote or fail


    By Jon Thompson 2 Posted Tuesday 23rd June 2009 15:45 GMT

    Next May, get up early, go to a polling station AND VOTE FOR SOMEONE ELSE!


    and More than that, MAKE SURE you AND Every Songle One of your family of voting age DO the same.

    vote for the 3rd and 4th partys ONLY, then you get to see at least One of the Lab or Con sitting on the sidelines were lib dem sit now, that would put the wind up them both.

    "Better Solution...

    By King Edward I Posted Wednesday 24th June 2009 07:45 GMT

    Next april, get someone to nominate you and drop a £500 deposit, canvess and GET YOURSELF ELECTED TO PARLIAMENT. Then sort it out! (Grenade, 'cos that's the alternative!)


    this is true, im hopeing the "pirate party" do exactly this ASAP to get their feet in the UK and start canvessing to let the UK net users get behind them.

    currently their main polices are a fair copyright of between 5-15 years stance, and engrained "data protection" of the highest order, I.e DO NOT take your personal data Ever without FULL agreement of the person, and DO NOT use that for anything without getting the persons SIGNED paper, at any time you can withdraw your agreement.

    i think it might also be a good thing,to add as policy any and all companies found to be using your data without consent, be forced under law, to pay you a copywrite fees for each breach too, whats good for the copywrite enforcers ask is also good enough for us to also ask of them in payments for the abuse of our copywrited data flows for their commercial profit, or jain time FOR THE Executive signing it off if they refuse to pay....

    a simple web site liked to the small claims courts in the same vain that DPA and FOI can be sent from whatdotheyknow type services would be the way to operate these abuse of my copywrite personal data, but ill leave the deatails to Sir BL and oponent of data protection act , and personal copywrite by corporattions abuses as the web expert to best work out the details.....

    get out and vote, MAKE your family do the same, AND vote for anyone BUT the two main partys, it takes virtually no time and you wont go hungry for change if you make this slight effort.

    Ohh but theres no point in me eating, nothing will change, its always the same they charge me to much, and ill only get hungry again later, so ill not be eating thank you very much....

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