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UK's Snooper's Charter approved by parliament, set to become law in next few weeks

By midian182 · 8 replies
Nov 17, 2016
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  1. After bubbling away in the background of UK politics for years, the Investigatory Powers Bill, better known as the Snooper’s Charter, is now on its way to becoming law after being passed by both the House of Lords and House of Commons.

    Prime Minister Theresa May first introduced the bill in its current form when she was Home Secretary back in November 2015, though it had been around in various guises before then. It now only requires Royal Assent to be officially adopted, which will likely happen before the end of the year.

    Rights groups and privacy campaigners have protested against the law, which demands tech firms store UK users’ internet data for up to twelve months, including a record of every site visited, and allow government agencies unfettered access to the information.

    The law lets the state hack into devices, networks, and services, including in bulk. It also allows the creation and maintenance of large databases of personal information on UK citizens, even those who aren’t suspected of committing any crimes

    The Bill makes sure the government can demand companies weaken their encryption on messaging services such as WhatsApp and iMessage, or decrypt data on request.

    As is nearly always the case with similar surveillance laws, the UK government says the Investigatory Powers Bill is necessary deterrent in the fight against terrorism. Many disagree with this claim, including those who make the encrypted software.

    “We believe it would be wrong to weaken security for hundreds of millions of law-abiding customers so that it will also be weaker for the very few who pose a threat,” Apple said last year. “In this rapidly evolving cyber-threat environment, companies should remain free to implement strong encryption to protect customers.”

    Writing in Newsweek, Open Rights Group director Jim Killock called the law the “most extreme surveillance law ever passed in a democracy."

    Permalink to story.

  2. PoppaHank

    PoppaHank TS Rookie

    I'll be the Trump people are salivating over this.
    wastedkill likes this.
  3. mcborge

    mcborge TS Maniac Posts: 395   +249

    That stupid, creepy, paranoid women (who know one voted for) is going to leave the uk wide open to any hacker group out there. and they wont even need to try too hard as this retarded bill is going to destroy any security measures we have and hand all our details to these groups or foreign governments on a plate. The problem with back doors is anyone can use them, (any) government or thief. I really hope the fallout from this bill destroys that tory nutbags career... If I wanted to live in a surveillance state I would move to china.
    Reehahs likes this.
  4. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,682   +1,078

    You might want to actually familiarize yourself with a political faction's positions before making a statement that shows how uninformed you are.
  5. wastedkill

    wastedkill TS Evangelist Posts: 1,423   +350

    Looks like its time to head to the streets and blow up parliament like in that film...
  6. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,786   +1,003

    They do realize that the movie "V for Vendetta" was not a positive template, right?

    Unnecessarily storing 12 months of data. Not only is this an abuse of government powers (It's like being able to see what everyone is doing and where they have been) but it's also a huge target for hackers. Think about this, they are making the companies store this data on their own dime. Most companies don't invest in proper data security for data they do get paid for, let alone redundant data they don't. It's just another burden on UK businesses.

    "even those who aren’t suspected of committing any crimes"

    So it otherwards they can access the information on anyone at anytime. It's kind of hard to see how this system won't be abused.
    captainload likes this.
  7. Bubbajim

    Bubbajim TS Addict Posts: 192   +123

    The hacking and data storage measures within the bill are horrific and draconian, but the part that sticks out as being the most stupid is the demands to undermine encryption. Services around the world currently try to use the best encryption they can to keep data safe, but get hacked daily nonetheless. How the f*** does the UK government think that making encryption weaker will benefit anyone but criminals? Put a "back door" into a program, and watch cyber-theives waltz in through it.
    mcborge likes this.
  8. Badvok

    Badvok TS Booster Posts: 159   +57

    "The Bill makes sure the government can demand companies weaken their encryption on messaging services such as WhatsApp and iMessage, or decrypt data on request." - wrong. The bill only states that if a mechanism/key is available to decrypt the data then they can be forced to do so. So it shouldn't affect WhatsApp or iMessage or any other service that doesn't hold the keys to the end-to-end encryption.
    captainload likes this.
  9. captainload

    captainload TS Member Posts: 26   +23

    The only answers are to use a VPN and encrypt anything you store in the "cloud". If everyone did this Big Brother would be forced to go back to profiling the obvious suspects instead of relying on automated mass spying (with all the abuse that brings). The company that puts out an easy-to-use software suite that simplifies VPN usage and automatic data encryption will reap tremendous rewards.

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