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Who gets to see the confidential UK surveillance annex?

Update: The request was refusedI confirm that the Cabinet Office holds information relevant to your request. I must inform you that the Cabinet Office is withholding this information because it is exempt under the exemption at section 23(1) (Information supplied by, or relating to, bodies dealing with security matters and national security) of the Freedom of Information Act. Section 23 is an absolute exemption; we do not therefore have to apply the public interest test. 

Every year the Interception of Communications Commissioner in the UK reviews the interception warrants in the UK (of which there are around 1500 warrants per year), and a small subset of the requests for communications data (of which there are around half a million requests per year).  Each report has statements of numbers, value statements about the professionalism of the police, and statements about errors, and problems and then tends to trivialise them.  But then each report has a confidential annex.  

Considering all the debates going on in the UK about the state of communications surveillance, it is essential to see who has access to this most important confidential annex.  After all, it would be a surprise to the Parliamentary process if key Parliamentarians do not have access to this full report and are yet expected to be the key adjudicators of what is necessary in a democratic society. This is why we are looking forward to the response to our FOI request to the Prime Minister's Office, due by August 28, 2012. 


Submitted by (not verified) on

Looks like their FoI request got rejected;

PI could ask for an internal review, but I doubt that would change the outcome.

Getting information out of the Cabinet Office is like getting blood out of a stone. While there is a public commitment to open Government by the Prime Minister of the day, it is never matched by the actions of the Cabinet Office.

Submitted by martyn poulson (not verified) on

the whole electronic big brother things is so in their corner,because its not so much of a physical aspect,more at a distance,the room for abuse is massive,take for instance phone taps,they are supposed to inform you i believe three months after they have been monitoring your coms? yeah right,the only time you would receive that letter is when they have collated enough on you to put you in jail. you would never receive the letter if they were say,dipping in every few weeks but find nothing.if they have nothing then, it borders on harassment that could lead to libel action and unnecessary government embarisments?

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