Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Fop

Giant database plan 'Orwellian'

Recommended Posts

Giant database plan 'Orwellian'

 

Jacqui Smith said intercepting communications was 'vital'

 

Proposals for a central database of all mobile phone and internet traffic have been condemned as "Orwellian".

 

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said the police and security services needed new powers to keep up with technology.

 

And she promised that the content of conversations would not be stored, just times and dates of messages and calls.

 

But the Lib Dems slammed the idea as "incompatible with a free country", while the Tories called on the government to justify its plans.

 

Details of the times, dates, duration and locations of mobile phone calls, numbers called, website visited and addresses e-mailed are already stored by telecoms companies for 12 months under a voluntary agreement.

 

The data can be accessed by the police and security services on request - but the government plans to take control of the process in order to comply with an EU directive and make it easier for investigators to do their job.

 

Information will be kept for two years by law and may be held centrally on a searchable database.

 

Without increasing their capacity to store data, the police and security services would have to consider a "massive expansion of surveillance," Ms Smith said in a speech to the Institute for Public Policy Research earlier.

 

'Vital capability'

 

She said: "Our ability to intercept communications and obtain communications data is vital to fighting terrorism and combating serious crime, including child sex abuse, murder and drugs trafficking.

 

"Communications data - that is, data about calls, such as the location and identity of the caller, not the content of the calls themselves - is used as important evidence in 95% of serious crime cases and in almost all security service operations since 2004.

 

 

There are no plans for an enormous database which will contain the content of your emails, the texts that you send or the chats you have on the phone or online

Jacqui Smith

 

Analysis: Behind the times?

 

"But the communications revolution has been rapid in this country and the way in which we intercept communications and collect communications data needs to change too.

 

"If it does not we will lose this vital capability that we currently have and that, to a certain extent, we all take for granted.

 

"The capability that enabled us to convict Ian Huntley for the Soham murders and that enabled us to achieve the convictions of those responsible for the 21/7 terrorist plots against London."

 

She said the "changes we need to make may require legislation" and there may even have to be legislation "to test what a solution to this problem will look like".

 

There will also be new laws to protect civil liberties, Ms Smith added, and she announced a public consultation starting in the New Year on the plans.

 

"I want this to be combined with a well-informed debate characterised by openness, rather than mere opinion, by reason and reasonableness," she told the IPPR.

 

'Necessity'

 

 

These proposals are incompatible with a free country and a free people

Chris Huhne

Lib Dem home affairs

 

Send us your comments

 

Ms Smith attempted to reassure people that the content of their e-mails and phone conversations would not be stored.

 

"There are no plans for an enormous database which will contain the content of your emails, the texts that you send or the chats you have on the phone or online.

 

"Nor are we going to give local authorities the power to trawl through such a database in the interest of investigating lower level criminality under the spurious cover of counter terrorist legislation.

 

"Local authorities do not have the power to listen to your calls now and they never will in future. You would rightly object to proposals of this kind and I would not consider them.

 

"What we will be proposing will be options which follow the key principles which govern all our work in this area - the principles of proportionality and necessity."

 

But the idea of storing phone and e-mail records has provoked concern among experts.

 

The government's own reviewer of anti-terror laws, Lord Carlile, said: "The raw idea of simply handing over all this information to any government, however benign, and sticking it in an electronic warehouse is an awful idea if there are not very strict controls about it."

 

The plans are expected to be included in the Communications Data Bill, due to be introduced in the Queen's Speech in November.

 

'Soft soap' claim

 

Shadow home secretary Dominic Grieve, for the Conservatives, said he welcomed Ms Smith's consultative approach but added her speech "begs mores questions than it answers".

 

"These proposals would mark a substantial shift in the powers of the state to obtain personal information on individuals," he said, adding: "The government must present convincing justification for such an exponential increase in the powers of the state."

 

Lib Dem home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne said: "The government's Orwellian plans for a vast database of our private communications are deeply worrying.

 

"I hope that this consultation is not just a sham exercise to soft-soap an unsuspecting public."

 

He said the government had repeatedly shown it could not be trusted with sensitive data, adding: "There is little reason to think ministers will be any less slapdash with our phone and internet records.

 

"Ministers claim the database will only be used in terrorist cases, but there is now a long list of cases, from the arrest of Walter Wolfgang for heckling at a Labour conference to the freezing of Icelandic assets, where anti-terrorism law has been used for purposes for which it was not intended."

 

"Our experience of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act suggests these powers will soon be used to spy on people's children, pets and bins.

 

"These proposals are incompatible with a free country and a free people."

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is actually the most interesting bit:

"Nor are we going to give local authorities the power to trawl through such a database in the interest of investigating lower level criminality under the spurious cover of counter terrorist legislation.

Both that she actually feels the need to say it, and that they said something similar no less than SIX times in parliament about the DNA database, before finally admitting that yes it actually would be used to go on trawls and that it was a "good idea" to do so (ignoring the previous assurances and the many, many, many guilty until proven innocent issues that go with doing such a thing).

 

Never mind that "anti-terror" legislation is being used for everything from your council making sure you don't put non-recyclables in your recycle bin, to freezing Icelandic assets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thin end of the wedge imo.

 

 

 

First thing that will happen is politicians will get caught out trafficking drugs, calling whores and taking back handers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nowt to hide, Nowt to worry about IMO.

 

Nothing to hide, means there's everything to fear.

 

 

For example being completely innocent won't stop you getting pulled into and potential accused of or even convicted of something on a DNA database trawl.

 

 

(and there are loads of ways that can happen, from being in the wrong place at a different time [or having your DNA carried by someone else that was in the wrong place at a different time], to partial DNA matches [which, of course, aren't actually "matches" at all], to pure database mistakes ["I'm sorry Mr B, but unfortunately there was a bit of a mix up.... I know you've spent 8 months on remand for murder, but we are really, really sorry...... no... no I'm afraid I can't guarantee it won't happen again, just count yourself lucky someone noticed it before you were convicted!"])

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nowt to hide, Nowt to worry about IMO.

 

Nothing to hide, means there's everything to fear.

 

 

For example being completely innocent won't stop you getting pulled into and potential accused of or even convicted of something on a DNA database trawl.

 

 

(and there are loads of ways that can happen, from being in the wrong place at a different time [or having your DNA carried by someone else that was in the wrong place at a different time], to partial DNA matches [which, of course, aren't actually "matches" at all], to pure database mistakes ["I'm sorry Mr B, but unfortunately there was a bit of a mix up.... I know you've spent 8 months on remand for murder, but we are really, really sorry...... no... no I'm afraid I can't guarantee it won't happen again, just count yourself lucky someone noticed it before you were convicted!"])

 

 

Plus 'They' will abuse the system something rotten.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest alex
Nowt to hide, Nowt to worry about IMO.

 

Nothing to hide, means there's everything to fear.

 

 

For example being completely innocent won't stop you getting pulled into and potential accused of or even convicted of something on a DNA database trawl.

 

 

(and there are loads of ways that can happen, from being in the wrong place at a different time [or having your DNA carried by someone else that was in the wrong place at a different time], to partial DNA matches [which, of course, aren't actually "matches" at all], to pure database mistakes ["I'm sorry Mr B, but unfortunately there was a bit of a mix up.... I know you've spent 8 months on remand for murder, but we are really, really sorry...... no... no I'm afraid I can't guarantee it won't happen again, just count yourself lucky someone noticed it before you were convicted!"])

 

 

Plus 'They' will abuse the system something rotten.

Of course they will. Once you've got a power like this it's very easy to keep extending it bit by bit (and that's just the stuff they admit to). However, it will be very difficult to remove this power in the future even when the current 'terrorist threat' (not saying there is no threat btw) is no longer an issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At the end of the day it isn't exclusively for out safety, it's more to contain the masses using terrorism and crime as an excuse.

 

The thing is it's only going to get worse, they aren't going to turn around and say there is too much surveillance but they will always be asking for more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
At the end of the day it isn't exclusively for out safety, it's more to contain the masses using terrorism and crime as an excuse.

 

The thing is it's only going to get worse, they aren't going to turn around and say there is too much surveillance but they will always be asking for more.

 

 

The DNA database is a perfect example of this.

 

Originally it was only samples from convicted criminals - now it's pretty much anyone's they get their hands on and it's near impossible to have it removed.

 

Originally it was for adults - now there's more than 400,000 kids on it, many younger than 10.

 

Originally it it wasn't supposed to be used for trawling - now it's a key, and soon perhaps the major, use of it.

 

 

 

It won't be long before they are monitoring your :jesuswept: just to make sure it is you crapping down your toilet.

 

It's gone beyond a joke now, it's actually hard to NOT draw Orwellian likenesses now that it is too (much like the next step of the smoking ban is to ban them in any cars).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Perfect example. :jesuswept:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest alex

Presumably he was no longer a suspect after this was cleared-up. Don't see the problem with that particular example tbh.

Edited by alex

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest alex
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

They must have already had it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

They must have already had it.

So he will have had previous then? Which would tell me that he was worthy of being pulled in and ruled out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

They must have already had it.

So he will have had previous then? Which would tell me that he was worthy of being pulled in and ruled out.

 

Dumbass naivetee kicks in.

 

So everyone on the database has previous?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

They must have already had it.

So he will have had previous then? Which would tell me that he was worthy of being pulled in and ruled out.

 

Dumbass naivetee kicks in.

 

So everyone on the database has previous?

 

I have never done anything wrong therefore I am on no database. I believe if you are required to provide it but you are innocent the sample is destroyed.

Edited by Danny B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest alex
My mate was pulled up because of the DNA database.

 

He used to work in a school and was arrested as they thought he had burgled it - he hadn't worked there for six months.

 

They had actually found his DNA on a cigarette!

 

 

Why did they take his DNA to compare it to the ciggie?

They must have already had it.

So he will have had previous then? Which would tell me that he was worthy of being pulled in and ruled out.

 

Dumbass naivetee kicks in.

 

So everyone on the database has previous?

 

I have never done anything wrong there for I am on no database. I believe if you are required to provide it but you are innocent the sample is destroyed.

And you have the gall to pull others up for their spelling. Almost as bad as 'present company accepted'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

Recent tweets

Toontastic Facebook

Donate to Toontastic

Keeping the lights on since... well ages ago
TT-Staff


×