UK Liberty

Home Office officials not keen on uberdatabase?

Posted in surveillance society by ukliberty on October 20, 2008

The Times:

Jacqui Smith, the home secretary, faces a revolt from her senior officials over plans to build a central database holding information on every telephone call, e-mail and internet visit made in the UK.

A “significant body of Home Office officials dealing with serious and organised crime” are privately lobbying against the plans, a leaked memo has revealed.

They believe the proposals are “impractical, disproportionate, politically unattractive and possibly unlawful from a human rights perspective”, the memo says.

Their stance puts them at loggerheads with the spy-masters at GCHQ, the government’s eavesdropping centre in Cheltenham, who have been driving through the plans.

Interesting that some opponents are prepared to be named:

This weekend a top law enforcement body further dented the government’s case for the database. Jack Wraith, of the data communications group of the Association of Chief Police Officers, described the plans as “mission creep”. He said there was an “inherent fear” of the data falling into the wrong hands.

“If someone’s got enough personal data on you and they don’t afford it the right protection and that data falls into the wrong hands, then it becomes a threat to you,” he said.

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