05 November 2008

UK: ALL Email, Phone Calls, Web Visits to be Collected by Govt

This is so damn scary.

Internet "black boxes" will be used to collect every email and web visit in the UK under the Government's plans for a giant "big brother" database, The Independent has learnt.

Home Office officials have told senior figures from the internet and telecommunications industries that the "black box" technology could automatically retain and store raw data from the web before transferring it to a giant central database controlled by the Government.

Plans to create a database holding information about every phone call, email and internet visit made in the UK have provoked a huge public outcry. Richard Thomas, the Information Commissioner, described it as "step too far" and the Government's own terrorism watchdog said that as a "raw idea" it was "awful".

Why stop with Internet-based activity or the phone system? Why not open all mail delivered by the postal service too? Hey, if you've a home or business in the UK which uses a security monitoring service, that's unlikely to be off limits either! You'll have Big Brother in your bedroom, bathroom, just checkin' to make sure you're being a good little citizen.

Because that's what this kind of watchdog mentality is all about; it's reducing the notion of privacy and individual freedom to nothing at all.

H/t to Toedancer over at BnR.

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