09 January 2009

Enough is Enough: Stand up for Sanity

TechCrunch UK's Mike Butcher has had enough:

From March this year all ISPs will by law have to keep information about every e-mail sent or received in the UK for a year. Currently many do this on a voluntary basis but this will now become mandatory. With little evidence to support their position, the government says this move is vital for monitoring crime and combating terrorist activity. The new rules are due to come into force on 15 March, as part of a European Commission directive which could affect every ISP in the country. It will cost between £25m and £70m. The rules already apply to telephone companies, which routinely hold much of the data for billing. The Home Office think the data is vital for investigation and intelligence gathering.

The Home Office insists the data will not contain the email content but data about when and where it was sent. But of course we all known that it is quite possible to work out quite a lot from email headers. This data will be accessible by over 600 public bodies, such as the police and councils, if they make a “valid” request.

Dr Richard Clayton, a security researcher at the University of Cambridge’s computer lab, points out that this will include all the spam out there and would rather see more focused online policing that catch all initiatives like this. Of course, once the government has this power, they will not draw back from it.

So what you gonna do about it, Mike?

On Monday I will be calling Westminster Council about how we can go about setting up a public rally against these initiatives, and I’d like to hear from anyone else who wants to get involved.

Me, I've had enough too: I'll be there, and getting in touch; anyone else?


Anonymous said...

Thanks Glyn. Have just left my details on Mike's blog.

Glyn Moody said...

Excellent - that's what I was hoping you'd say....