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UPDATE Lords in 2nd Attempt to Sneak UK Internet Snooping Law into Bill

Saturday, January 31st, 2015 (9:56 am) - Score 804

The former Metropolitan Police Chief, Lord Blair, with support from Lord Carlisle, Lord King and Lord West, has once again attempted to sneak a controversial new Internet Snooping law into the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill (CTSB) after initially withdrawing it last Monday.

The huge amendment, which is very similar to 2012’s rejected Communications Data Bill and would force ISPs into logging a much bigger slice of everybody’s online activity (this would then be made more accessible to the security services), was first tabled over a week ago during the closing stages of the House of Lord’s CTSB debate (here).

However the move, which was seen by many as a dubious attempt to rush the new rules into law by effectively subverting normal procedure, ultimately ended up failing after the Lords agreed to remove the amendments at the end of Monday’s heated debate.

During the debate it became known that a revised Comms Data Bill had also been created, which was designed in response to 2012’s scathing Joint Committee report. The JC’s report described the Comms Data Bill as “overkill” and called for it to be “significantly amended” (here). According to Lord Blencathra, the revised bill resolved 95% of the JC’s objections but has never been seen.

On Monday’s debate several calls were made to see this revised bill and it was suggested that the four Lords might reintroduce their amendments if the revised bill could not be produced. So far this appears not to have happened and thus the Lords are carrying out their threat.

An updated MARSHALLED LIST OF Amendments (scroll down to 11A), which is set to be debated on Monday 2nd February 2015, now appears to include the controversial amendments. Interestingly representatives from all of the major parties said during last Monday’s debate that, regardless of whether they supported the law, this was not the way to get it introduced. Never the less it’s likely that Monday’s debate will make for nervous viewing among the bills many opponents.

We will update this article after that debate.

UPDATE 2nd Feb 2015

At the end of the day the Lords predictably did not push the amendment to a vote, but as reported before we do anticipate that a new bill will surface sometime this year.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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11 Responses
  1. Avatar timeless

    these sons of B’s seem to be trying to push this into legislation regardless of any democratic process.. whats the betting that we will find out that its either been snuck into another bill or find that Cameron has dug up yet a new archaic law which completely bypasses any democratic process to push this new law into being just like they did with welfare (in fact the current changes to welfare were voted out, so the tories used an old law called “financial privilege” to push it through completely disregarding the fact that the changes were democratically voted out, my point being that if they want the snoopers charter in law lm sure they will find a way to get it in without watering it down and either way thats something to fear).

    • Avatar tonyp

      We are (understandably) getting het up about the proposed legislation but this legalises what security services have been doing covertly since WWII (e.g. wiretapping). The problem is that technology has allowed transparent global communications to be placed in non-governmental hands in our country. Not so in China and other non-democratic countries that can cut off access to the ‘net and mobile phone networks. Thus our secret squirrels have to recruit the services of commercial companies to do their bidding. Despite some companies stated desire not to get involved, they will willingly comply because it gives them power over their customers. I wonder if the U.S. Department of Defense realised what they were doing when allowing all comers on to their DARPAnet, the embryo internet? The genie is out of the bottle now and no matter how they try, our government is going to have a hell of a job putting it back. Boy there will be some monster court trials here. Anyone for a law degree course? Of course you need to be wealthy enough to study for those law degrees.

      On another subject-ish, someone complains about buying from the far-east. It is my view that successive governments have squandered the opportunity to automate the means of production, preferring cheap labour. Since cheap labour is a thing of the past in this country (and rightly so) we have to rely on underdeveloped countries with cheap labour to produce things. However that does not last as wages increase in those countries. We have lost a lot of the practical skills here and seem to be unwilling to relearn them. Media, law, marketing and the like is a much cleaner and lucrative occupation than engineering (with real maths) and I don’t think we can make up the skills gap. Automated production here would not be any more expensive than the far-east and not have those annoying things like people to pay. The resulting income from automated could pay for a leisured society and only those who want to work in people type jobs (nurses, doctors, fire and police for example) could do so and get paid a good salary for their services. Utopia indeed?

      That’s off my chest! Going back to the bill’s amendments, what a complex thing it is and does it have to be so complex? It is interesting to see the interlinking of the proposed legislation with RIPA 2003 and who is allowed to snoop! The security services seem to get little mention and special branch not at all. Then all police authorities will be allowed to. Yes the official secrets act applies to police but who knows when a witch hunt is in progress. The price we have to pay for a complex, unequal society?

  2. Avatar cyclope

    Democracy what a load of bollox the only time this country is democratic is when it suites that bunch of parasites called government who want to control what we do see and say how is that democratic ?

    Scameron needs to go, the man and his evil cronies IDS and Mc Vey are callus and egotistic individuals who have done a lot of damage to the welfare system they have systematically persecuted those who are sick and disabled and those who are jobless, as well as hiding the true unemployment figures ,

    By the introduction and abuse of sanctions unpaid workfare schemes and there’s probably a lot more who are in low paid work who are claiming WTC and other benefits as well as having to rely on handouts from food banks to survive,People in these groups are not counted as umemployed,

    Then there’s the floored not fit for purpose WCA carried out by ATOS soon to be Maximus who’s primary tasks are to find as many sick &disabled people fit for work as possible
    When they said the economy is on the up that too is more lies they have not created any real full time jobs as they like to claim , surely this is corruption ?
    sorry for the rant but i thought it needed saying

    • Avatar Bob2002

      To paraphrase a comment I once read –

      “If you always think you’ll earn a middle class income, never be unemployed, never get sick, the Conservatives are for you.”

      The Conservatives lack empathy for the less fortunate in society, to my mind there isn’t a huge difference between lacking empathy and being evil.

    • Avatar X66yh

      But you and the rest are quite happy to buy your cheap hi-fi’s, TV’s, mobile phones, computers and the rest like cheap T-shirts etc from country’s in the Far East where the sick, disabled and jobless are treated far worse.

      Except that out there it’s all a long way away from you, out of your sight, out of mind and frankly you don’t give a monkeys how the workers are (mis)treated.

      So I take it that you are now quite prepared to pay the MUCH higher prices of such things being made in the UK in places working to UK H&S regs which would give all these people you mention valuable jobs.

      Thought not

    • Avatar Bob2002

      Nothing you have said addresses the behaviour of the Conservative party – who control how people in the UK live … I’m sure you are a paragon of virtue who has never, ever, bought anything made in a developing nation(actually it would be an economic disaster for them if that trade dsappeared)? Yep, if I’m a hypocrite I’m in your company.

    • Avatar No Clue

      “buy your cheap hi-fi’s, TV’s, mobile phones, computers and the rest like cheap T-shirts etc from country’s in the Far East where the sick, disabled and jobless are treated far worse.

      Except that out there it’s all a long way away from you, out of your sight, out of mind and frankly you don’t give a monkeys how the workers are (mis)treated.”

      So says dumb dumb boy sitting there with his equipment made in the far east connected to the internet.

    • Worth pointing out that the Comms Data Bill is something that Labour pushed for too, indeed their original IMP appears to have been worse.

    • Avatar No Clue

      Labour Vs Conservative arguing should not even come into it. For the past 20+ years they have had the same ideas only rehashed and named something else. I of course use the term “ideas” very lightly.

  3. Avatar cyclope

    Most if not all computer parts and tv’s audio systems are made or their components are made in places like china even a lot of houshold goods are made there you would be hard pushed to actually find these things made anywhere else,
    As for cheap clothes, even some of the big brand names are having products made in these countries and they aren’t particularly cheap

    And those who are less well off don’t have the luxury of choice , thank’s to governments allowing this divide between the rich and poor to get bigger, because they are out of touch and or don’t care because it doesnt affect them

  4. Avatar dragoneast

    It doesn’t work. To combat evil you have to reach people’s hearts and minds, not their machines.

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