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In the media
Emma Draper's picture

'We are looking at a possible breach of human rights law,’ Privacy International's Emma Draper told the BBC.

‘It is illegal to indefinitely retain the DNA profiles of individuals after they are acquitted or released without charge, and the communications, photos and location data contained in most people's smartphones is at least as valuable and as personal as DNA.’

Ms Draper added that while the Met's current plans were limited to fixed extraction terminals in stations, portable technology was readily available.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Privacy campaigners also fear the gizmos could later be introduced for stop-and-searches and that suspects could be put under unfair pressure to reveal Pin codes.

Privacy International accused police of being too cagey about the technology. Spokeswoman Emma Draper said: ‘We need a full and frank disclosure of how and when and why this system will be used.’

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

But privacy campaigners today said the move was a “possible breach of human rights laws”.

Emma Draper, spokeswoman for Privacy International, said: “From a legal perspective anything like this has to be proportionate.

“The right to personal privacy in a democractic society has to be balanced against the requirements of law enforcement. I don’t feel the balance has in any way been struck here.”

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

"We are looking at a possible breach of human rights law," spokeswoman Emma Draper told the BBC.

"It is illegal to indefinitely retain the DNA profiles of individuals after they are acquitted or released without charge, and the communications, photos and location data contained in most people's smartphones is at least as valuable and as personal as DNA."

Ms Draper added that while the Met's current plans were limited to fixed extraction terminals in stations, portable technology was readily available.

Blog
Nigel Waters's picture

The APEC Data Privacy Subgroup (DPS) commenced a new five year work programme at a meeting in Moscow in February 2012.  This follows the commitment by APEC Leaders in late 2011 to the Cross Border Privacy Rules (CBPR) system as one way implementing the APEC Data Privacy Framework. 

The Joint Oversight Panel was formed at the DPS meeting in Moscow and comprises members from the US (chair), Chinese Taipei  and Mexico, with the chair of the DPS (from Canada) as alternate – who will be needed if and when any of the other three economies apply for participation. 

Blast
Emma Draper's picture

In her speech earlier today outlining the British government's plans for the next year, the Queen stated:

My government intends to bring forward measures to maintain the ability of the law enforcement and intelligence agencies to access vital communications data under strict safeguards to protect the public, subject to scrutiny of draft clauses.”

Blast
Emma Draper's picture

We're looking for someone who's passionate about privacy, loves foreign travel and feels at-home speaking to large audiences and the media to be our Head of International Advocacy.

Blog
Emma Draper's picture

On Thursday 19th April, Privacy International - in partnership with the LSE, the Foundation for Information Policy Research, Open Rights Group and Big Brother Watch - hosted Scrambling for Safety 2012, a discussion of the Home Office's new plans for mass interception in the UK.

Blast
Emma Draper's picture

In February 2012, the PI team travelled to India, Bangladesh and Hong Kong to meet with our local partners in the region and speak at four conferences they had organized. For more information on the trip, please read our blog. We also got the chance to interview our partners in India and Bangladesh on the privacy issues facing them at the moment - this video is the result of those conversations. 

Blog
Dr Gus Hosein's picture

It is an increasingly common tactic of governments to say very little about a proposed policy, wait for opponents to start speaking publicly about it and then seize gleefully upon any error, accusing their opponents of peddling 'myths'. This allows officials to spend more time talking about what the policy isn't, and less time explaining what the policy actually is.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

The comments were made during a debate on the plans held at the London School of Economics on Thursday.

The Scrambling for Safety conference brought together academics, politicians, computer security experts and the public to debate the current proposals.

Event
Emma Draper's picture

Vrije Universiteit Brussel – Research Group on Law, Science, Technology & Society (VUB-LSTS), Trilateral Research & Consulting LLP and Privacy International are currently conducting research on privacy impact assessment (PIA).

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Cameron said his proposal was meant "to keep our country safe from serious and organised crime and also from terrorist threats that… that we still face in this country". But as Privacy International explained: "In a terrorism investigation, the police will already have access to all the data they could want. This is about other investigations." The information gathered in this new programme would be available to local law enforcement for use in any investigation and would be available without any judicial oversight.

Event
Emma Draper's picture

The ninth Scrambling for Safety conference has been created with the aim of bringing together a variety of stakeholders interested in surveillance policy for an open exchange of views on the Home Office's new Communications Capabilities Development Programme.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

London-based campaign group Privacy International told the BBC it intended to take part in the process.

"Technologies like these need to be carefully designed if they are to enhance our private lives, not endanger them," said spokeswoman Emma Draper.

"Sharing highly sensitive personal data - like medical information - to a network of wireless devices automatically creates certain risks and vulnerabilities, so security and privacy need to be built in at the earliest stages of the development process."

Opinion piece
Eric King's picture

In September last year, David Cameron told the UN general assembly: "As people in north Africa and the Middle East stand up and give voice to their hopes for more open and democratic societies, we have an opportunity – and I would say a responsibility – to help them." The Arab Spring uprisings had provided a chink of light for those living under repressive regimes, and it was now up to western democracies to help them throw open the door to a bright new future.

Blast
Emma Draper's picture

Gus was interviewed by ex-Home Secretary Jacqui Smith and ex-MP David Mellor on their Saturday morning programme on LBC Radio. It was particularly interesting to hear Ms Smith's take on the Home Office's "new" Communications Capabilities Development Programme, given that it bears such a startling resemblance to the Interception Modernisation Programme she herself proposed in 2009. Listen to the interview below.

Event
Eric King's picture

The PI team will be at the Old Nick in Holborn from 5:30pm onwards to talk about #CCDP and other key issues. The format is a open and we're hoping for a group discussion to tackle this policy. All are welcome!

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Worse still, a privacy group called Privacy International has identified British, American, German and Israeli companies who are exporting spooky technologies like DPI hardware and equally sophisticated software products like "optical cyber solutions" that enable mass surveillance of large scale populations, to repressive regimes in the Middle East such as Yemen, Egypt, Syria and Iran.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Last night Gus Hosein, of Privacy International, said: "We don't want deep packet inspection 'black boxes' to be installed because it opens the door to all kinds of intrusion into private communications.

"The Government are kidding themselves if they think as soon as they have the black boxes they'll be able to check everyone's VOIP calls, and so on, because everything is encrypted.

"Unless GCHQ have a bit of magic we don't know about it would take an impossible amount of computational power to break all that encryption."

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Experts point out that as many communications, including those on Gmail, are protected from prying eyes by an encryption method known as https, it would take significant resources to break the security.

“The Home Office needs to come clean about what precisely they’re planning,” Eric King, head of research at Privacy International, said last week. “There are two options here: either the system they’re proposing won’t actually give them the access they’re after, in which case it’s a colossal waste of money, or they’re planning to break https on a massive scale.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Eric King, head of research at Privacy International, the campaign group, believes there are few precedents for what the coalition proposes, stating that it would necessitate the use of “deep packet inspection technology”. Some broadband providers deploy this technology to track the browsing habits of their own consumers, but not normally at the state’s behest.

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Privacy International said it had visited international arms and security fairs and identified at least 30 UK companies that it believes have exported surveillance technology to countries including Syria, Iran, Yemen and Bahrain. A further 50 companies exporting similar technology from the US were also identified. Germany and Israel were also identified as big exporters of surveillance technology, in what is reportedly a £3bn a year industry.

Blast
Eric King's picture

This week we've seen the British public rally against the government's invasive CCDP mass surveillance proposal. A number of petitions have been created - the ones of which I'm aware are below, but if I've missed any please do let me know in the comments. 

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Eric King, research director of Privacy International, said: ‘RIPA’s authorisation regime is amongst the weakest in the world and enables government access to information, with barely any real restrictions.’

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Gus Hosein, executive director of civil rights watchdog Privacy International, welcomed the opportunity for a pause to examine the proposed legislature.

He said: 'What’s important and essential is that we continue to have these discussions. I would never argue that these aren’t important powers for a government to have, but these are modern policy problems that need sophisticated public debate.'

Event
Eric King's picture

The PI team will be at the Green pub in Clerkenwell from 6pm onwards to talk about #CCDP and other key issues. The format is informal and we're hoping for a group discussion about how best to tackle this policy. All are welcome!

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

“CCDP changes everything,” Gus Hosein of Privacy International told Slate. “It compels telephone companies and ISPs to collect information that they never would have collected, and then makes them retain it. This will be the first time that there’s a law actively requiring an organization to collect information on innocent people just in case it may be of relevance in the future.”

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

“I’m afraid that if this program gets introduced, the U.K. will be leapfrogging Iran in the business of surveilling its citizens,” said Eric King, head of research at Privacy International. “This program is so broad that no other country has yet to try it, and I am dumbfounded they are even considering it here.”

In the media
Emma Draper's picture

Privacy International says that there is no doubt that it is designed to encourage MPs that might not agree with the snooping bill to support it.

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