New Parliament, new snoopers charter?
The Snoopers Charter as it is commonly known may well have resurfaced in the Queen's Speech when the new Investigatory Powers Bill was announced as part of the Speech.
With just a basic outline so far it is hard to pin down exactly what will be in the bill but the main thrust is about maintaining the ability for the police and security services to target the online activities of serious criminals with appropriate oversight. One possible sticky area may be if the SNP disagree with elements of the bill as their strong presence in Westminster since Scotland has no other say on National security and interception powers at this time.
"ISPA will work with members to scrutinise the new Bill and we urge Government to properly balance security, privacy, costs to industry, technical feasibility and the need to maintain the UK's reputation as a leading place to do business online."ISPA Secretary General Nicholas Lansman
The concerns people are raising over data retention and access to encrypted data goes well beyond the worries over what local councils have been said to do in terms of 'spying' on people previously, since in a global economy businesses from overseas will worry about doing business with UK firms if its clear that any encrypted emails (which should be the norm for business) are readable, this covers both traditional bricks and mortar firms and the massive digital economy.
At the end of the day no-one wants the UK to become a haven for terrorists and while a ultra-safe PG-rated walled garden approach at the other end of the scale may appeal to some, the growth in global travel and communications means that any country adopting that approach will seriously harm its economy and future prospects.