back to article UK gov rushes through emergency law on data retention

Emergency law is expected within days to be pushed through Parliament that will force ISPs to retain customer data to allow spooks to continue to spy on Brits' internet and telephone activity, after existing powers were recently ruled invalid by the European Union's highest court. The planned legislation crucially has cross- …

  1. Khaptain Silver badge

    No problem for me then !

    >The ability to access information about communications and intercept the communications of dangerous individuals is essential to fight the threat from criminals and terrorists targeting the UK.

    Since I am not a "dangerous indiviual", or not that I know of, does that mean that my data will not be recorded.

    Or is there another method classifying what a dangerous individual actually is.

    Can someone actually provide a detailed definition of "dangerous indiviual".

    1. Mad Mike

      Re: No problem for me then !

      I think people need to understand they don't mean 'dangerous individual' at all, which would mean the individual is already guilty of some dangerous activity or at least suspected of it. What they mean is 'potentially dangerous individual', which effectively means everybody.

      In essence, this is simply a case of laziness. If there was a process that allowed appropriate organisations to obtain a court order requiring these companies to retain individuals information (but only that individual), then this would be fine. The organisation makes a case before a judge (or similar) who decides if they have just cause and authorises the retention of the information. However, because they are lazy, that would simply be too much like hard work. So, they want everything recorded all the time for everyone and then they can look through it to their hearts content and not bother about showing just cause etc.

      Of course, the big issue with this sort of information is the ability to trawl through it. At the moment, the implication is that the companies involved would hold the data themselves. However, what would happen if they were then required to hand it over to some government department that kept it. Data mining could then be performed to obtain lists of terrorist, pedophiles or any other category you care to mention based on say the sites they've visited. Of course, going to a site doesn't necessarily prove anything, as people sometimes go for a look. For instance, not everyone who looked at the terrorist handbook was actually going to make a bomb or whatever. But that soon becomes forgotten.

    2. CAPS LOCK Silver badge

      Re: No problem for me then !

      "Can someone actually provide a detailed definition of "dangerous indiviual"."

      "Any person not in a continuously vegetative state."

      1. Khaptain Silver badge

        Re: No problem for me then !

        "Any person not in a continuously vegetative state"

        I suppose that that definition will exclude most of the cabinet then.

        1. JohnMurray

          Re: No problem for me then !

          "I suppose that that definition will exclude most of the cabinet then"

          And the shadow cabinet.

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge
            Megaphone

            Re: No problem for me then !

            There we go again, one rule for politicians and celebrities and another for the rest of us...

      2. GreyWolf

        Here's the definition...

        Here's the definition, encapsulated in a Czech riddle, given to me by my very good friend who grew up behind the Iron Curtain:

        Q: Why do policement in Czechoslavkia go around in threes?

        A: One can read, one can write, and the other is there to watch those two dangerous intellectuals.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No problem for me then !

      "Dangerous individual", i.e. any individual classified as "dangerous", based on the assessment of materials gathered in the process of classification of "dangerous".

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No problem for me then !

      A 'dangerous individual' by their definition is anyone that is not a politician, a civil servant or a member of the police - in other words all the plebs. In actual fact it is those that are in fact the most dangerous.

      1. BongoJoe

        Re: No problem for me then !

        And the Masons

      2. Suburban Inmate
        Go

        @ Ivan 4

        There are a few honourable exceptions that have actually stood with the people they represent, and no doubt found themselves on the "domestic extremists" list. E.g. Caroline Lucas.

    6. big_D Silver badge

      Mostly harmless

      @Khaptrain

      you are mostly harmless, which means a bit of you could be dangerous, so expect that they will be following your every move.

      1. Titus Technophobe

        Re: Mostly harmless

        It does seem to be legislation that merely retains an existing capability for the police and security services.

        That said there also seems to be an expansion of the oversight, more transparency and a decrease in the public bodies that can access this data.

        For a piece of emergency legislation this seems quite a lot better than previous examples.

      2. Julian Taylor Silver badge

        Re: Mostly harmless

        But only if they can have the logs from your ISP.

    7. CommanderGalaxian
      Black Helicopters

      Re: No problem for me then !

      "Can someone actually provide a detailed definition of "dangerous indiviual"."

      Well according to the most recent information, that would be anyone who:

      1) Uses Tor

      2) Uses Tails

      3) Reads Linux magazines

      4) Uses Linux?

      5) Reads websites whose content is privacy or security orientated.

      For example - a website like this https://prism-break.org/en/

      HTH.

      1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

        Re: No problem for me then !

        "5) Reads websites whose content is privacy or security orientated.

        For example - a website like this h̶t̶t̶p̶s̶:̶/̶/̶p̶r̶i̶s̶m̶-̶b̶r̶e̶a̶k̶.̶o̶r̶g̶/̶e̶n̶/̶"

        or like... http://www.theregister.co.uk/

        Posting anonymously - well, atleast until my ISP bends over backwards and hands over the logs.

    8. Cynical_Funk

      Re: No problem for me then !

      "Can someone actually provide a detailed definition of "dangerous individual"."

      Whoever they're pointing a when we use the phrase "dangerous individual".

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No problem for me then !

      'Can someone actually provide a detailed definition of "dangerous indiviual".'

      Certainly! Any influential or powerful member of the US or British government, able to send our armed forces to kill thousands of people in distant countries whenever they feel the need to boost their popularity and distract attention from their domestic failures (sorry, "to protect us from the terrorists, paedophiles, organised criminals, etc. etc.)

      Ironically, those are probably the ONLY people whose communications data will NOT be snooped on.

  2. Tony Paulazzo

    "It's something we can all be comfortable about."

    And yet, I'm not. Neither am I a terrorist or serious criminal. Wankers! (keep that for your records).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "We will establish a Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board on the American model, to ensure that civil liberties are properly considered in the formulation of government policy on counter-terrorism"

      That should make you feel comfortable ...

      I mean it has oversight based on the American model which stopped all indiscriminate capture of citizen data. It wasn't like they were looking through the web cam porn from Yahoo chat users or anything?

      And "properly considered", how much more woolly could you get? No threat of jail for said data accesser if they abuse the system or search wrong data etc Oh no, just that someone, somewhere will properly consider it, with properly defined by the government.

      "while local authorities will be required to go through a single central authority "

      Why do local authorities need to access this data? This is supposed to be about terrorism and major criminals, is this the remit of the local authority?

      Throughout history the idea of an "evil enemy", be it the Nazis, the communists, the radicalist has been used to frighten the population and get them to agree to lose their civil liberties for a promise of some extra safety, however the biggest combined threat to the world and Britain in the last ten years .. the one with the biggest impact, the most misery... the 'banking crisis', engineered by our own government with lax regulation. How many of those responsible were actually punished?

      1. JohnMurray

        You would be surprised at how much access local authorities have to your personal information.

        DVLA records.

        Some health records.

        Financial information.

        Criminal records.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "We will establish a Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board on the American model, to ensure that civil liberties are properly considered in the formulation of government policy on counter-terrorism"

        'That should make you feel comfortable ...'

        Well the American model includes the right to bear arms so an armed rebellion is possible when the government gets out of hand. Maybe we should ask how they are implementing that liberty?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Those aren't "arms"! *These* are ARMS...

          "Well the American model includes the right to bear arms..."

          Well, yes... That would probably be why recent US governments have rejected the Founding Fathers' reluctance to allow standing armies - especially quartered in the USA itself - and their extreme hostility to any foreign wars.

          That's why the DHS purchased 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition (over five for every American man, woman, and child - no simple double tap for them!) plus war-surplus armoured cars. That, of course, is over and above the National Guard with its jet fighters, helicopter gunships, tanks, machine guns, mortars, artillery... and the armed forces (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Special Forces) which spend as much on weapons every year as the rest of the world put together.

          I don't think the armed citizens would be wise to try anything. As long as they just stick to shooting each other occasionally, everything will be just fine.

          1. Mad Mike

            Re: Those aren't "arms"! *These* are ARMS...

            @Tom Welsh.

            You could well ask the question; who is the Department of Homeland Security protecting the homeland from? Is it terrorists, invasion etc.etc., or the population of the homeland? All this worldwide panic around terrorism and pedophiles is all very handy to allow governments to restrict liberty and freedoms, but is it simply opportunism at events, or something more sinister? After all, a lot of the threats we currently face were created by the USA. The predecessors to the Taliban were effectively created by the CIA to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. In fact, a huge amount of radical Islam was created by the CIA and originally directed at the Soviets. Saddam Hussein was supported and armed for many years by the USA. etc.etc.

  3. xyz

    First person on the dangerous persons' list

    willl be that Tom Watson fella then.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: First person on the dangerous persons' list

      I like him, always on our side for a change.

      The man who bust the super injunctions

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: First person on the dangerous persons' list

      Tom Watson is one of the few MPs that actually understand IT and care about the government trying to foist this kind of surveillance on the entire population. Top bloke, pity he can't stop this emergency bill going through.

      It would be nice to think that a review of RIPA will result in a reduction in its powers, but we know it's going to suggest it doesn't go far enough...

    3. lurker

      Re: First person on the dangerous persons' list

      Yeah, he does seem to be that rarest of oxymorons, the honest politician. Probably means he won't last long in the business, sadly.

  4. Champ

    Can someone explain ...

    ...why a warrant isn't required for the spooks to access this data. It would be if they wanted to look in my cupboards, so why not if they want to look in my email?

    Like most commentards (I imagine), I'm deeply suspicious of government having access to this data.

    1. Mad Mike

      Re: Can someone explain ...

      If the data were only used for the purposes they've stated, then people might be OK with it. However, we all know that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Also, scope creep is inevitable. So, if you allow them to start down this path, it is inevitable that the data will be used for far more than was ever envisioned and almost certainly for illegal purposes by politicians themselves.

      After all, politicians have never broken any laws have they..........................

      Expenses (where a few sacrificial lambs went before the court, but in reality, the majority of the houses of parliament should have been).

      Buying peerages.

      Perjury.

      etc.

      etc.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Can someone explain ...

      Simples: "emergency". Cause you know, we're in a state of war, and certain liberties have to go (purely as a temporary measure, of course).

    3. JohnMurray

      Re: Can someone explain ...

      Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 Section 18

      1. Titus Technophobe

        Re: Can someone explain ...

        Do bear in mind this is 'communications traffic data' not the contents of your emails, telephone calls etc. i.e. the data is who sent you either an email, telephone call, or text message and vice versa,

        1. Mad Mike

          Re: Can someone explain ...

          @Titus Technophobe.

          It is today, but tomorrow??????????????????

          Also, if you drive from one place to another, do you mind them knowing you've done it, even if they don't know why? What if you were going to see your mistress? Do you mind them knowing now?

          I don't think directed monitoring under suitable oversight is the argument here. It's just the total dragnet being implemented. If someone is proven or even suspected to a reasonable level of being a terrorist or whatever, fine, monitor them. But, simply doing it to the whole population...............

          As to this legislation arguably being better than the previous.......I agree. It does have more oversight (assuming that works properly) etc. However, it's a bit like saying being stabbed is better than being shot. I'd rather have neither.......

          1. Titus Technophobe

            Re: Can someone explain ...

            @Mad Mike

            It is today, but tomorrow??????????????????

            Today they (as in all the major political parties) do seem to have accepted a reduction in the numbers of public organisations who can access this data, more oversight and an increase in the public transparency of the data access.

            Looking at ‘today’ this seems a much better situation than that left by the previous government. Suggesting that we do in fact live in a democratic society and tomorrow will take care of itself, surely ?

            Also, if you drive from one place to another, do you mind them knowing you've done it, even if they don't know why? What if you were going to see your mistress? Do you mind them knowing now?

            No I don’t mind them knowing that I went to see my mistress. I wouldn’t have been alone in having a mistress, and they would not have had any particular reason to examine the situation any further. The records of me going to visit her would have simply aged out of the system.

            The same would also apply to the details of phone calls, emails and texts I sent to my mistress. Do bear in mind that this is traffic information, and it is entirely possible that she could have just been a female friend.

            I don't think directed monitoring under suitable oversight is the argument here. It's just the total dragnet being implemented. If someone is proven or even suspected to a reasonable level of being a terrorist or whatever, fine, monitor them. But, simply doing it to the whole population...............

            A ‘dragnet’ implemented on communications traffic data. Data which would only be accessed on the basis of some other suspicion for both resourcing (i.e. doing much more is costly) and legislative (to examine contents would require further authorisation) reasons. It just doesn’t seem to worry me like it does you.

            As to this legislation arguably being better than the previous.......I agree. It does have more oversight (assuming that works properly) etc. However, it's a bit like saying being stabbed is better than being shot. I'd rather have neither.......

            Indeed. Yet the mass populous complain bitterly when the police and/or security services don’t have or react to this information. I’m not saying that you are in a minority of one but you do perhaps have to respect the will of the masses.

            1. Rich 11 Silver badge

              Re: Can someone explain ...

              I’m not saying that you are in a minority of one but you do perhaps have to respect the will of the masses.

              Are the masses voting on this issue, after a healthy, well-informed public debate?

              Didn't think so.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Can someone explain ...

                To tap into peoples only activity you do need a warrant signed off by a judge, unless you're a spook and then they already do what they want.

                To access meta data they just need plod's boss to agree it's "proportional and relevant". The plod sends the request to the ISP/operator to access the specific details requested (who and when - not what), they are not constantly scouring or data mining for the sake of it as for a start the data resides at each operator and I'm sure they earn a pretty penny giving plod access to it.

            2. Mad Mike

              Re: Can someone explain ...

              @Titus Technophobe

              "Looking at ‘today’ this seems a much better situation than that left by the previous government. Suggesting that we do in fact live in a democratic society and tomorrow will take care of itself, surely ?"

              I can't deny that it looks better superficially. Exactly how good the oversight will be is another matter. We don't just want an oversight body, but an oversight body that does it's job well and honestly and that's pretty unlikely. Do we live in a democracy? There are only three political parties with any real chance of getting anywhere; maybe four if you include UKIP. So, whilst we might call ourselves a democracy, I don't really believe in it, as there is nobody I want to vote for and I don't have the option of 'none of the above'. The country is run by people who have been shown to be corrupt, self-serving, greedy and generally of low moral stock. So, the UK is a bit like a company. In theory the shareholders can vote down things at the AGM (and other times maybe), but in reality it never really happens. So, if you really think your vote counts, I'm afraid you're pretty delusional.

              "No I don’t mind them knowing that I went to see my mistress. I wouldn’t have been alone in having a mistress, and they would not have had any particular reason to examine the situation any further. The records of me going to visit her would have simply aged out of the system.

              The same would also apply to the details of phone calls, emails and texts I sent to my mistress. Do bear in mind that this is traffic information, and it is entirely possible that she could have just been a female friend."

              You will do when someone decides to use that information against you!! Give me £10k, or we tell your wife. Do this or we tell your wife etc.etc. Look back through history and no matter what purpose information has been collected for, it has ended up being used for nefarious purposes way removed from its original intent. If it were only used for the stated intent, that might not be so bad, but we all know about scope creep, both officially and unofficially sanctioned.

              "A ‘dragnet’ implemented on communications traffic data. Data which would only be accessed on the basis of some other suspicion for both resourcing (i.e. doing much more is costly) and legislative (to examine contents would require further authorisation) reasons. It just doesn’t seem to worry me like it does you."

              On the basis of some other suspicion can easily become 'just because I want to'. That's the job of the oversight and if you look back over time, you'll see just how good oversight normally is!! pretty damn bad. Look at all the quangos out there that are supposed to be exercising control and oversight over various areas and are actually doing nothing and being poodles? I assume you'll never complain about the size of your energy bill again as OFGEM (oversight and control) must be doing a splendid job!! Ditto for almost every other area.

              "Indeed. Yet the mass populous complain bitterly when the police and/or security services don’t have or react to this information. I’m not saying that you are in a minority of one but you do perhaps have to respect the will of the masses."

              A commonly held misconception. Generally speaking, the police and security services already had the information, they simply failed to put it all together. 7/7 is a good example of this. They already had information on several of those involved, yet didn't connect the dots. This sort of monitoring wouldn't have provided any more. Personally, I accept that no matter what happens, the police and security services can't possibly stop everything. I do accept that not everyone believes that and a reasonable number think perfection is possible. Take the murder of Lee Rigby. The people involved were already known.

              As a society, we have to accept that unpleasant incidents will sometimes occur and perfect security isn't possible. The police and security services can no more stop every terrorist attack than they can stop every mugging or theft etc. We simply have to accept this and have a realistic outlook on what is possible. I remember tens of thousands of people walking through mainline London stations with me whilst the IRA bombing campaigns were going on. If you happen to get hit, that's just bad luck. We can do something to try and stop it, but perfection will never be achieved.

              1. Titus Technophobe

                Re: Can someone explain ...

                "Looking at ‘today’ … tomorrow will take care of itself, surely ?"

                I can't deny that it looks better superficially. …The country is run by people who have been shown to be corrupt, self-serving, greedy and generally of low moral stock. … So, if you really think your vote counts, I'm afraid you're pretty delusional.

                I can’t disagree with your description of the people that run the county. That said the pond scum category may not apply to all of them.

                That said even total dictators eventually work out that treating everybody like serfs is just a bit too much like hard work … If you look back historically as society evolved even monarchs (who believed that they had a divine right to rule) did bow to the will of the populous.

                "No I don’t mind them knowing that I went to see my mistress… and it is entirely possible that she could have just been a female friend."

                You will do when someone decides to use that information against you!! Give me £10k, or we tell your wife. Do this or we tell your wife etc.etc. … officially and unofficially sanctioned.

                I would have laughed. You want 10K to tell my wife that I make occasional texts, calls and emails to a female friend of mine. My wife knows I have known this female friend for years why shouldn’t I contact her?

                It is important to bear in mind that this is communications metadata not the contents.

                "A ‘dragnet’ implemented on communications traffic data. ….. It just doesn’t seem to worry me like it does you."

                On the basis of some other suspicion can easily … energy bill again as OFGEM (oversight and control) must be doing a splendid job!! Ditto for almost every other area.

                I don’t think it is valid to conflate the oversight of the scum bag thieving energy energy companies, and the security services. As an aside if you look at the list of prosecutions on the Wikipedia entry for RIPA they deal mostly with unlawful interception.

                "Indeed. Yet the mass populous complain .. respect the will of the masses."

                A commonly held misconception. …. Take the murder of Lee Rigby. The people involved were already known.

                The main set of information reported as missing around 911 and 7/7 by the security services was the communications traffic from the internet. Much of RIPA or indeed the PATRIOT act seems to be intelligence services increasing the capability onto the internet very much in line with other telecommunications.

                Just as you have read one interpretation of events into that which is reported I have found reports which show terrorist events being stopped by the use of intercepted traffic data.

                As a society, we have to .. I remember tens of thousands of people walking through mainline London stations with me whilst the IRA bombing campaigns were going on. If you happen to get hit, that's just bad luck. We can do something to try and stop it, but perfection will never be achieved.

                I too have been in the situation in mainline London stations ... but bear in mind at the time security services were intercepting communications and so on. How many more of IRA campaigns would have succeeded if these communications were not intercepted?

                1. Mad Mike

                  Re: Can someone explain ...

                  @Titus Technophobe.

                  "The main set of information reported as missing around 911 and 7/7 by the security services was the communications traffic from the internet. Much of RIPA or indeed the PATRIOT act seems to be intelligence services increasing the capability onto the internet very much in line with other telecommunications."

                  Ah. This is what they said, but is now known to be disinformation. A certain man named Snowdon (amongst others) has made it clear they did have the communications traffic and in fact, the content as well as the metadata!! So, this was actually the security services using an untrue excuse for missing them and turning that into a means of openly keeping this information rather than doing it on the sly.

                  In essence this has been acknowledged for years in some ways. The US Navy has a submarine specifically equipped for tapping undersea fibre optic cables.....USS Jimmy Carter. There were other subs before her as well. So, we need to realise the complaints from the security services around not being able to intercept communications are simply misinformation and not true.

                  "I too have been in the situation in mainline London stations ... but bear in mind at the time security services were intercepting communications and so on. How many more of IRA campaigns would have succeeded if these communications were not intercepted?"

                  Earlier you said the security services weren't intercepting the communications!! Here you seem to be accepting that the security services have been intercepting terrorist communications.

                  The reality is that this will give the security services no more information than they've had for years, maybe decades. The difference now is that because it is done openly rather than clandestine, it can be admitted in courts etc.

                  1. Titus Technophobe

                    Re: Can someone explain ...

                    Earlier you said the security services weren't intercepting the communications!! Here you seem to be accepting that the security services have been intercepting terrorist communications.

                    Yes and no. My original explanation was lacking. What happened was that in the 1980s and 90s the security services had the capability to look at telecommunications metadata. With the emergence of the internet that capability was lost.

                    Much of RIPA and PATRIOT is extending the security services original capabilities for telecommunications traffic to include internet based communications.

                    1. Mad Mike

                      Re: Can someone explain ...

                      @Titus Technophobe.

                      "Yes and no. My original explanation was lacking. What happened was that in the 1980s and 90s the security services had the capability to look at telecommunications metadata. With the emergence of the internet that capability was lost.

                      Much of RIPA and PATRIOT is extending the security services original capabilities for telecommunications traffic to include internet based communications."

                      Not true. The security services have been intercepting both metadata and the content of telecommunications for years, well over a decade. Today, they're doing the internet pretty wholesale as well and trying to get more and more as time goes on. The difference now is that they are being open about it, rather than covert as before. This changes the evidential status.

                      If you think RIPA and the PATRIOT act are about telecommunications only, or even mostly, you really need to read them. They go way further than that.

  5. stu 4

    Heil Cameron!

    I for one think this does not go far enough!

    Think of the children!!

    Who is checking their bottoms are clean after every toilet visit ?*

    I'll tell you - no one!

    It's good to see Britain is finally turning into the fascist dictatorism we so narrowly missed out on 70 years ago.

    Heil Cameron!

    *http://listentothepeople.co.uk/component/content/article/24-wild-imaginings/353-the-bottom-inspectors-from-viz.html

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Heil Cameron!

      Who is checking their bottoms are clean after every toilet visit ?

      You want to know why nobody is thinking of the children? Because if you think of the children you are automatically classed as a pedo...

  6. itsallcrap

    What's the emergency?

    Are we suddenly under significantly increased threat of attack? I can't find anything in the news about it. Can governments really just introduce 'emergency' laws without having to state what the emergency is?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What's the emergency?

      Honestly, at this stage I'd rather we just got attacked. Nothing's worth living in constant surveillance for.

      1. Red Bren

        Re: What's the emergency?

        I'd rather we just got attacked.

        Giving succour to the enemy, eh? That's treason! Time for a visit this the reeducation gulag for you...

    2. Phil W

      Re: What's the emergency?

      The 'emergency' is that the European courts decided that the arrangements that were already in place didn't have to continue, one of the numerous downsides to being in the EU as it stands (in the sense that they have effectively decided what our national laws are. Potential down voters please note, I am not a UKIP voter nor am I specifically anti-EU or pro-EU but I am pro EU reform).

      I'm not in favour of excessive unnecessary surveillance but, I am impressed by the way this bill has been introduced in that it has relatively short, in political terms, time limits built in.

      This seems to demonstrate a degree of common sense that I would previously of thought Cameron/Clegg incapable of.

      1. big_D Silver badge

        Re: What's the emergency?

        More like:

        Euro Whiney: Spying on your citizens indefinitely is wrong, the current rules are invalid. Keeping all their communications data for 12 months or more is a human rights violation.

        UK: Hmm, we'll see about that! Sergeant Porno, we'll show the Euro Whiney just how intelligent I am!

        Sgt. Porno: Right Sir, you get the two short planks and I'll get the tape measure.

    3. BongoJoe

      Re: What's the emergency?

      I seem to remember a Philip K Dick novel in which the population were kept in shelters undeground as they were under threat.

      I remember reading that when I was in short trousers and thought that it was too far fetched and that it would never happen.

      And then I watched 'Brazil' where the government did its best to keep up the threat.

      Again, I thought it could never happen. I can't even say that this is the thin edge of the wedge as we've seen that years ago.

      This is wrong, all very wrong and it is enough to drive me to tears.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What's the emergency?

      "Are we suddenly under significantly increased threat of attack?"

      We will be after Cameron joins the Yanks and Israelis in their next Middle Eastern massacre.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This makes my skin itch!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    squek squek

    such laws wouldn't be passed in anything even remotely similar rush in Switzerland. But they can and will be (again) in the UK, because they know the Brits are spineless. Emergency, my ass! First thing I saw on the beeb was the headline "emergency data law set". So I asked myself: "like when I'm out on the street and they need to find who I am right?" And then I saw the first paragraph: "to fight "criminals and terrorists", David Cameron says." and I thought: "Ah, THAT emergency again! But of course, what was I thinking!"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: squek squek

      Actualy Switzerland is now considering a far reaching data retention law extending the period from six months up to one year.

      But I really don't see why the UK government is insisting on one year, given that other nations only have a retention period of six months or none at all.

      If I know that my metadata is kept for one year, nothing prevents me from laundering my trafick through a country with six months or zero data retention.

      So after six months, all the UK data is worthless.

      And that's not even accounting for Tor or vpn.

      Also the Communications Act only requires retention of IP addresses, it does not prove which contents was sent or received, and it does not apply to information services like cyberlockers, online forums or instant messanging.

      You can't use the metadata to prove that a file with a specific hash was uploaded by IP address x.x.x.x. because cyberlockers are either outside the UK and are not legally required to keep any logs.

      And best of all, if someone uses another's wireless connection tunneling through vpn, Tor or any proxy chain wherein one of the hops keep no logs, the forensic trail is cold.

      1. Lars Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: squek squek

        "Also the Communications Act only requires retention of IP addresses, it does not prove which contents was sent or received, and it does not apply to information services like cyberlockers, online forums or instant messanging.". So why this fantastic need to collect that data.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      Re: squek squek

      When did the Brits become so spineless?

      On 9/11 I was working on a project in Frankfurt on the approach to the airport, in a tower block and I was staying on the other side of the road on the 44th floor of the Marriott.

      That night the French, German and US colleagues all booked out of the Marriott and moved into German hotels around the town. The Brits had the attitude of "we won't let the b*stards affect us!" And stayed in the hotel and paid tribute in the bar...

      Now it seems that the UK is turning into a bunch of sheeple that do whatever they are told.

      When I was growing up, my parents talked about the IRA attacks and said that no matter what happenned, they wouldn't let it affect how they lived their lives. That is how I carried on after the attacks on 9/11, but now it seems that that attitude is uncool and I should be grovelling to the government to put me under ever more surveillance "for my own good."

      "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

      1. lurker

        Re: squek squek

        It's not that we are spineless, more just that we are massively cynical and have an 'oh not this shit again' attitude which results in a tendency towards political apathy. The fact that all three political parties are in on this gives you some idea why, we pretty much have one political party with three different colour schemes and a 'monster raving racist' party as the only alternative.

        1. big_D Silver badge

          Re: squek squek

          Apropos... I miss Screaming Lord Such!

          Looking at what is happening in the UK from here in Germany, it is sometimes embarassing when friends ask me just what is going on...

  9. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Headmaster

    And todays word from history ...

    Abwehr ...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And todays word from history ...

      Bloody good word of the day!

      (Post 1938 it would be phrase of the day from history: Amt Ausland/Abwehr im Oberkommando der Wehrmacht)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Words that are friends ...

        Some words just seem to want to live together ... given the tone of Camerons recent edicts, perhaps we need a Secret State Police ... however I'm struggling with how we'd make it snappy. "SSP" is too generic. Now if we could run the words together, something like Ststpo ?

        Anyone any suggestions ?

        1. Graham Marsden
          Big Brother

          Re: Words that are friends ...

          Perhaps we could have one over-arching organisation to deal with everything like this.

          They could be called the GEneral STate POlice, perhaps...

          1. MrWibble
            Trollface

            Re: Words that are friends ...

            GESTPO.

            What?

            1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

              Re: Words that are friends ... @ Mr Wibble

              Of course GESTPO - if there was, say, another "A" in there it would sound like a very nasty group in nazi Germany! Not the image the British government would want to portray, what?

            2. Graham Marsden
              Headmaster

              @MrWibble - Re: Words that are friends ...

              A

              1. BongoJoe

                Re: @MrWibble - Words that are friends ...

                It makes no difference what we call it; it soon will be sold off for overseas organisations to run.

                At a cost to the taxpayer, of course.

        2. rizb

          Re: Words that are friends ...

          What we need is a committee for state security. You could call it by its initials but that might a) be a clue because such an organisation should clearly be secret and b) might look like cascading style sheets.

          So pick a language to use instead - Russia, maybe? Komitet gosudarstvennoy bezopasnosti is a little clunky, how about we abbreviate that down....

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Words that are friends ...

            you could simplify this (currently) un-warranted UK internal spooking organisation to "NSAGCHQHMGCCUKNTAC" (where's Carol or Rachel when you need them!) - there's deff an interesting word or two hidden in the above 'random' 3, 4, 5, 6 letter agency imaginings.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Enforcing ISP data harvesting is simply a smoke screen

    IMHO, this bill is simply to provide a way for law enforcement to construct a plausible trail of evidence that can be used in courts. The data is ALREADY harvested and stored en masse by the security services but can't be presented in courts for fear of exposing the true extent of the surveillance dragnet. By rushing through this legislation, law enforcement can continue to use the real dragnet data but then build a case retrospectively using the ISP sourced data.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Enforcing ISP data harvesting is simply a smoke screen

      "IMHO, this bill is simply to provide a way for law enforcement to construct a plausible trail of evidence that can be used in courts. The data is ALREADY

      harvested and stored en masse by the security services but can't be presented in courts for fear of exposing the true extent of the surveillance dragnet."

      Partially true, but you forget that the mandatory data retention regime makes it possible to track an internet subscriber by proving who was assigned a particular IP address at time xxx:yyy;:zzz.

      Without the law, ISPs caring about their customers' privacy could simply delete data not necessary to retain for billing purposes.

      Mandatory data retention is a dangerous slippery slope: It assumes that data not required for billing must be kept in order to facilitate a future government investigation because individually targeted monitoring is too expensive.

      It's like saying that every citizen must carry a GPS and be trackable by the government on the assumption that the information might be useful to law enforcement.

      But the worst consequence of DR is that the same info is available in private civil cases.

      Copyright trolling -- suing individual account subscribers is only possible because the ISPs must keep IP addresses.

  11. Jedibeeftrix

    Thank the Lord!

    "Some bodies will lose their powers to access data altogether while local authorities will be required to go through a single central authority who will make the request on their behalf."

    1. rizb

      Re: Thank the Lord!

      Trans - local authorities will be required to go through a single central authority who will accept the request on their behalf.

  12. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Alert

    Sunset clause

    At least it has a sunset clause (as indeed ALL "emergency" legislation should).

    Cameron won't be here in 2016 ....

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: Sunset clause

      With the three main parties unconditionally supporting this, what are the chances that it will not be renewed?

      1. JimmyPage Silver badge

        Re: Sunset clause

        Depends what parliament looks like after 2015. I have a hunch that despite valiant efforts from Cameron, Clegg, and Miliband to pretend nothing has changed, they are commanding the tide to turn back.

        The entire demographic of politics has shifted in ways unthinkable 30 years ago. The UK is no longer the easily partitioned LibLabCon landscape of days of yore.

        I forsee coalitions as being a way of life. Remind me, who do I vote for if I don't want this shit ?

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: Sunset clause

          I forsee coalitions as being a way of life. Remind me, who do I vote for if I don't want this shit ?

          The Greens.

          Got to start somehwere, else it's just same-old, same-old.

          1. JimmyPage Silver badge
            Thumb Up

            @Rich 11

            I have already decided Green for me - despite the fact I disagree with almost all of their energy policy (something the big 3 have managed to fail at too ... looks like no party is going to build nuclear anyway, so I may as well vote Green).

            None of the big 3 are getting my vote ... and since it's taken 30 years for me to feel this way, it's unlikely they ever will again.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Sunset clause

          "The entire demographic of politics has shifted in ways unthinkable 30 years ago. The UK is no longer the easily partitioned LibLabCon landscape of days of yore".

          For one thing - as I have been saying for years now - there is no longer any party that is conservative. The "Conservative" party could well be prosecuted under whatever has replaced the Trades Descriptions Act, except that of course, being politicians, they are immune to the law.

          As a lifelong conservative (small "s"), I find it frustrating that there is literally no one I can vote for. In the meantime, UKIP will have to do. As far as I can see, they are broadly in favour of less government (and hence less government interference).

    2. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: Sunset clause

      The 19th century bill allowing income tax also had a sunset clause.

      They've renewed it every year since.

  13. Mike Smith
    Big Brother

    Before we all fall foul of Godwin...

    ... cast your minds back a few years.

    A "Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board..."

    Doubleplusgood.

    "...on the American model"

    Doubleplusungood until otherproved...

    A sunset clause - plusgood.

    I'm not saying that allowing unrestricted snooping on all and sundry is a good thing - it ain't - but it is worth remembering that the last government wouldn't have even bothered with such ridiculous concepts.

    If you need reminding, El Reg has a lot of articles on the subject.

  14. Jason 41
    Black Helicopters

    Model T

    I do wonder if basing anything even remotely linked to privacy on an American model is actually doing us any favours?

  15. Alfred 2
    Unhappy

    I think ...

    Descartes: "I think therfore I am."

    Cameron: "You think, therefore you are a dangerous individual!"

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: I think ...

      Descartes: "I think therfore I am."

      Cameron: "You think, therefore you are a dangerous individual!" .... Alfred 2

      Here is support for that view and opinion, Alfred 2 ......... “The most dangerous man, to any government, is the man who is able to think things out for himself…Almost inevitably, he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, and intolerable.”—H.L. Mencken, American journalist

      1. JimmyPage Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        upvoted for H.L. Mencken quote ..

        "Explanations exist; they have existed for all time; there is always a well-known solution to every human problem — neat, plausible, and wrong."

  16. Shaha Alam
    Big Brother

    "The consequences of not acting are grave"

    why can't the consequences ever just be "whimsical"?

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      Re: "The consequences of not acting are grave"

      Cameron is just being a spineless twat*, proven by his comment that he doesn't want to be a prime minister explaining why a terrorist attack occurred. He doesn't have the courage to say "Damn the terrorists, there is no significant risk, privacy is more important". Whilst he still isn't top of my Prime Minister Hate List (Thatcher and Blair still vie for first place on that one), he just went into the top three.

      * again.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "This makes my skin itch!"

    No kidding...

    Wasn't the original legislation stuck down because it was too intrusive and deemed illegal by the European Court?

    This 'emergency' legislation is therefore an attempt to legalise what uk.gov has been doing illegally in the previous years.

    Weasels, the lot of them.

  18. John Sturdy
    Holmes

    An appropriate way round it?

    Perhaps the companies concerned, when approached for files containing the records, can say "The data you're looking for was in 114 files, which we have inexpicably lost. You know how it goes."

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: An appropriate way round it?

      Perhaps hints were given to the three main parties that the files were at the point of being 'found'?

      Yep, it's tinfoil hat time.

  19. M7S

    "This bill will simply replicate what currently exists"

    So its a duplication then? If so, why bother?

    Mind you, given HMG's drive to cut duplication and superfluous red tape, perhaps we can look foward to the same bill repealing all the preivous mish-mash of regulations, so that everything is nice and clear. Then again....

  20. WonkoTheSane

    Meanwhile in 2016...

    Parliamentary review of this "new law":-

    Politician#1: "Why has this got a sunset clause?"

    Politician#2: "We don't need that! Let's delete it."

    Politican#3: "OK. All in favour?"

    Direction: All present raise hands

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What The Fuck is happening in this country

    We have laws like this coming in and the public swallow it up.

    We have people locked away for wearing tshirts with slogons on them.

    And we have this law stating that someone who decides (lets put religion aside for a moment), to go and fight for what they believe to be right in Syria being locked up.

    In the 1930s normal working class people (miners, etc) were sick of Britain's pandering to the fascists, and took it upon themselves to go and fight with the people of Spain against Franco's fascists.

    It was generally seem as a brave and worthy thing to do by the British public.

    I stuggle to see what the difference is if someone does the same against Syrian tyranical rule ?

    Now it's seen as dangerous extremist terrorism ?

    And yet if the UK army went there tomorrow it'd be fine and dandy to fight against them.

    On the one hand, I cannot get my head around a law which states that I, as an individual am bound by the law of that country, even when I am somewhere else.. that is just ridiculous!

    If I am in Syria, or for that matter, the USA, china or the North Pole, I am bound by the rules of THAT country - not the rules of whatever fucking country I am a citizen of. Lets arrest every american 17yo that has sex in the UK on statuary rape charges for example.

    On the other hand, I can't see this stupid law being enforced if it wasn't for the connection with 'Islamic law'/Islam. Even as an militant athiest, this seems wrong to me. Sure if young people are being brain washed into it IN the UK, then we might decide we want to do something about it. That, I can understand - i.e. if instead of doing it for moral reasons, they are persuaded to do it because they are told their magical man in the sky wants them to, etc.

    However, 1000s of people are being killed in Syria. As an individual I may feel strongly this is wrong. I may feel strongly that I want to do something to protect them. My country does not feel this way. I am therefore, obviously a dangerous terrorist extremist if I go over there to do something about it.

    I don't 'get' the UK crime that is apparently being committed here. I just don't get it.

    Thankfully, as any devout religious person will tell you, as an atheist, my kind and I, am responsible for most of the world's wars anyway, and can feel I have already done by bit. :p

    1. Mad Mike

      Re: What The Fuck is happening in this country

      @AC

      Your fundamental error is to apply logic and sanity to the situation and then try to understand the governments actions.

      People who go and fight in Syria may or may not become a risk when they come back to this country. All depends on individual beliefs and actions. However, the government is basically saying they are all risks and terrorists. This is nonsense. Sure, some may want to come back and bomb (or whatever) us, but just because one does, does not mean they all do.

      When looking at all this, you need to look ahead a few decades and see where it is heading. Basically, the government and governing bodies of the UK are looking more and more like the Assad regime every year. Yes, big gulf at the moment, but the first steps in that direction, which are gradually being followed by more and more. After all, who would have thought a decade ago that people would be locked up indefinitely by a secret court using information not available (even after the trial) to the general public? Yet it's now happened.

      This is all a slippery slope that only ends up one place. Look at all the tyrannical regimes of the past and note the gradual slide into the abyss. The continual increase in surveillance until you get something like the STASI. Locking people up for longer and longer on less and less information. Suddenly, secret courts appear etc.etc.etc.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What The Fuck is happening in this country

      With Syria, the government the gov's in a dilemma, I'm sure. On one hand they want to get rid of the current regime, and every little helps, even those poor bastards flying there via Turkey. And remember we usually do not hear what is going on behind the closed doors, i.e. whether our good masters haven' taken upon themselves to supply intelligence, weapons shipments, training, finance and advice to the rebels. On the other hand, they're scared, and rightly so, of young Muslims going there to get combat experience and weapons training. And it so happens that the current freedom fighters in Syria (i.e. opposing the evil regime of Assad which we used to make business deals with, happily, in the past) also mix up with the "very bad guys". And, being young, those Brits are easy to to convince that becoming martyrs and taking the fight to the REAL enemy, i.e. the western corrupt and evil society is THE way forward, man. And the reward is there, round the bend, in heaven, with all those willing virgins, etc, etc. I'm sure there's easily available little extra training on how to make a big boom back from where you come from. Obviously, it's only for the bestest and baddest fighters who can be trusted with such a challenging job, and our British Muslim brothers here, who have proven they are true believers, are the perfect weapons against the infideli...

      I guess it's easier (and much cheaper) to browbeat the wannabes by arresting those who have already been (look boy, this is what happens - we can track you from the satellite when you play a warrior out there!) slapping anything, say... terrorism charges, then to track many others later when they do come back home.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What The Fuck is happening in this country

        " On one hand they want to get rid of the current regime, and every little helps..."

        Why do they want to get rid of the current "regime"? (Have you noticed that, whenever our masters want to overthrow another country's government, it mysteriously becomes a "regime"?)

        OK, Assad and his government may have committed a lot of violent acts, and they may throw their weight around. BUT present-day Syria is (or was, before the violent revolutionaries started tearing it apart) the most secular, non-fundamentalist, tolerant country in the Middle East. As was Iraq, before it was literally destroyed in order to save it from Saddam. And Libya under Qaddafi wasn't that bad.

        All these things are relative. Look, if you will, at Saudi Arabia - the most barbarous, extremist fundamentalist regime in the world. But their royal family, which runs the country in a literally medieval way, are our good buddies so no one can say a word against them. Virtually all the Gulf States are similar: absolute monarchies in which you can disappear permanently just for whispering any comment about the government, or for a wide range of offences against their religious law. Those are countries in which slavery is both widespread and officially approved of - indeed, they couldn't get by without it. Yet we line up on their side against countries that are relatively secular, liberal, and to a certain extent democratic. It's almost as if someone was trying to make (and keep) the Middle East as primitive, violent, and ghastly as possible.

  22. Silviu C.

    Pfft logic

    "Unless they have a business reason to hold this data, internet and phone companies will start deleting [comms data] which has serious consequences for investigations – investigations which can take many months and which rely on retrospectively accessing data for evidential purposes."

    If the EU directive that allowed for a law to gather that data has been shot down, then how can they say that they will be able to use said data as evidence? Shooting down that directive means that such evidence is illegal, thus not usable.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Pfft logic

      the EC Data Retention Directive was declared "invalid(*)" but wasn't exactly completely struck down forever, the ECJ court suggested that the Directive needed around 10 modifying clauses to make it acceptable, to comply with the human-rights embedded principle of proportionality. As far as I know, only Austria has quietly repealed the DRD nationally, Germany never bothered to implement it as it obviously wasn't constitutionally valid, UKUSA is obviously worried about potential or actual court cases.

      The ECJ said this positive thing about the DRD "... the retention of data for the purpose of their possible transmission to the competent national authorities genuinely satisfies an objective of general interest, namely the fight against serious crime and, ultimately, public security."

      However, they were critical that the DRD as implemented isn't just focussed on loosely defined "serious crime" - but seeks everyone's data, all the time

      They further criticised that there are little controls on who in the national authorities might use the data, currently anyone vaguely in UK .gov may use all of DRD for anything? (anecdotally the various EU Police forces simply haven't used DRD to the extent claimed, it's purely an intelligence device)

      The judges noticed that there were little to no safeguards against abuse of the DRD data, and that as some of the 28 EU nation's DRD retained data might be hosted outside the EU that there was this further risk of DRD data-leakage, should some large shadowy national security organisation or two, not already have their hands on it.

      It remains to be seen if this not-yet/not-ever debated LIBLABCON emergency law does accurately answer the ECJ list of points, which would be great, or is it just another data-rape?

      (*)Directive 2006/24/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 on the retention of data generated or processed in connection with the provision of publicly available electronic communications services or of public communications networks and amending Directive 2002/58/EC is invalid.

  23. GreyWolf

    I was sad in 1989 when the Iron Curtain came down..

    ...that all those wonderful Communist jokes would disappear, and in only a few years, no-one would understand them...

    Now I see that our beloved Government is working to make them all relevant again...and a new generation of stroppy kids will be ridiculing our masters...

  24. Mike Shepherd

    How helpful...

    How helpful of the US to claim only a few days ago that increased airline security was needed. It is remarkable how "pressing" legislative needs so often follow high-profile "security" stories.

  25. phuzz Silver badge
    Alert

    They're supposed to work for you

    If you live in the UK, and you don't like the sound of this then go to https://www.writetothem.com/ put in your postcode, pick your MP, and write them a note giving them your opinion, as one of their constituents.

    You've got until next Monday.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: They're supposed to work for you

      What? And put myself on a watch list?

      1. Roj Blake Silver badge

        Re: They're supposed to work for you

        If you're a UK citizen, you're already on a watch list.

  26. barstewardsquad
    Joke

    No problem here, move along please

    After all what could possibly go wrong when the Government rushes through legislation, especially in regards to technology matters?

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Surveillance is not an end toward totalitarianism, it is totalitarianism itself.

    We begin therefore where they are determined not to end, with the question whether any form of democratic self-government, anywhere, is consistent with the kind of massive, pervasive, surveillance into which the Unites States government has led not only us but the world.

    This should not actually be a complicated inquiry.

    http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/may/27/-sp-privacy-under-attack-nsa-files-revealed-new-threats-democracy

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/democracylive/europe-24385999

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Episode 1: The Phantom Terrorist

    .Net Gunray: "My lord! Is that... legal?"

    Teresa Palpamay: "I will MAKE it legal..."

    .Net Gunray: "And the European Court of Human Rights?"

    Teresa Palpamay: "The Chancellor should never have brought them into this! Veto them immediately!"

    .Net Gunray: "Yes...yes, my lord. As you wish."

    1. cortland

      Blackadder, right?

      Hmm. Why am I thinking, "I have a cunning plan!"?

  29. ElNumbre
    Mushroom

    War of the Databases

    "No-one would have believed in the early years of the 21st century that human affairs were being watched from the timeless worlds of cyberspace. No-one could have dreamed that we were being scrutinized, as someone with a microscope studies creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. Few men even considered the possibility of an interest in their lives by people off this planet. And yet, across the gulf of cyberspace, minds immeasurably more vacuous to ours regarded this data with envious eyes, and slowly and surely, they drew their plans against us…”

    1. stu 4

      Re: War of the Databases

      da da da

      da da daaaaaa

      da da da

      daa daa daa

      da da

      da da

      da da da da da da

  30. Alan J. Wylie

    Good to see that Julian Huppert has been involved

    Julian Huppert, one of the most technologically clueful MPs, was involved in draughting the bill.

    http://www.libdemvoice.org/julian-huppert-this-is-not-snoopers-charter-its-what-we-had-already-

    plus-additional-safeguards-41464.html

  31. batfastad

    Vote?

    So did anyone vote for this?

    Ah, golf club democracy dear boy.

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      Re: Vote?

      It requires a golf club to teach these asshats what democracy means.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    the EU

    Step-bystep I am being dragged (unwillingly) to the conclusion that we get more civil liberty protection as a result of the EU & its courts than we do from our own parliament and its courts.One reason to ignore UKIP and its cohorts.

  33. jay_bea

    Mandatory Reference to 1984

    "It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to. You had to live— did live, from habit that became instinct— in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized." George Orwell, 1984.

    Of course, now we have mobile phones, so it does not matter whether it is dark.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Definition of an ISP?

    I don't think I've ever seen an actual definition of an 'ISP' anywhere for this law or the previous guff. Can someone please point me at one?

    I mean, they are supposedly collecting 'communication information'. So who collects that? I run a network and I certainly don't. What about colocation centres? Do they need to? What if you set up peering with with a number of international telcos, do they have responsibility to record the info? My laptop is 4 hops form LINX. I'm pretty sure no-one between me an LINX is collecting this data as far as I'm aware.

  35. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Flame

    And once again ... signal to noise

    none of our MPs have the faintest idea of the concept of signal to noise. What people should really be concerned about is by building up these <however many> petabytes a DAY, our security services are simply never going to find the real smoking gun. They may find loads of things which look like a smoking gun. But by the time they've realised it isn't (with a very negative outcome for the innocent who has been detained without trial for 28 days, lost their job, home, reputation, and has no redress from a state which will charge him for his rent and board whilst incarcerated) the real terrorists. The ones we *should* be scared of, will be skipping into the sunset, having bypassed all these measures by (a) faxing each other in Arabic, or (b) used VPNs and TOR where sensible.

  36. David 45

    P*ss*d off with politicians

    When will these clowns learn that they are supposed to be in office to serve us, the people and not the other way round? They seem to merrily go about their own agendas without so much as a by-your-leave or a nod to Joe public who might just possibly want some sort of say in what's happening to the country and where the taxes are being spent. I have no faith in the b*gg*rs whatsoever, having had a load of boiler plate waffle come back to me on the only two occasions I have contacted my MP on issues that I felt were important. Nest-featherers all, methinks, not to mention this paranoia about terrorists, who would probably use some sort of closed communication system or encryption anyway. It's just an excuse to spy on the populace at large for anything that the government doesn't like.

  37. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Re. P*ss*d off with politicians

      Oh dear. I think we have what is known as a "devil's advocate" amongst us - more commonly known as a troll. You are obviously in full agreement then with the commonly quoted myth that if you're doing nothing wrong, then you've nothing to fear from all these draconian measures. I take it that you are also more than happy with the idea of every personal aspect of your life being recorded, just "because they can" and presumably equally glib with the premise of every shred of privacy being stripped away by these marauding spooks, politicians and spies. The line has to be drawn somewhere. Things have already gone way too far and I despair. I believe we're all living on the same planet. Are the politicians who conjure up these lunatic schemes also happy being spied on (because they sure as hell are) by the likes of NSA and GCHQ? Does nobody have any control over these mavericks?

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  38. batfastad

    Rendition

    Get rendered to diego garcia, they "lose" the records quickly enough then.

  39. Roj Blake Silver badge

    This would be more acceptable if...

    The general public was allowed to see the phone, email and web metadata of all MPs, all police officers above the rank of Superintendent and all GCHQ, MI5 and MI6 officers.

    If they can see our stuff, we should be able to see theirs.

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Never fear

    Never fear, the newer Google Glass head-set is here, soon you too can be brain-washed into saying, "Ok Google, Ok Google, Ok Google..!" instead of "No Google or Get lost Google!" and the best bit, it even read's your mind for you.. So soon you wont have a single private thought left in your head! The future is clearly now where soon you'll be just arrested by the thought police for simply having had the thought that the PM is a gormless twatter! As to them targetting Linux users as extremists, that would include there own Police force who use it for there Forensics investigations... Marvelous!

  41. Richard 45
    Black Helicopters

    Looks like it's about time to grow onions at Glastonbury.

  42. SeanEllis
    Stop

    Clause 4 and 5

    Seem to immediately and widely extend existing powers, not just ensure them. This is not suitable to be included in an emergency bill with no oversight.

  43. cortland

    Here you are

    On write only media, too.

    http://img8.uploadhouse.com/fileuploads/15754/15754398626c257c6149a40fe7b70efc1a6917df.jpg

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019