Author Archives: James Baker

Opinion: The case for increased surveillance hasn’t been made

At the heart of the draft Communications Bill is a drive to make it easier for a range of officials to access information about people’s communications.  The Home Office maintains that officals need this push-button surveillance in order to help fight emotive crimes such as terrorism and paedophiles.

Despite widespread criticisms of the bill put forward by the Home Office to achieve those ends, most politicians appear to be uncritically accepting their underlying premise – that officials need to be granted more powers to snoop on citizens. Just take for instace Clegg’s statement on the bill:
“They were very clear that …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 3 Comments

The Independent View: Selling our NHS data is not putting us in control of our health records

Back in 2010 there was a wave of optimism amongst civil liberties campaigners, especially those of us concerned with protecting privacy from an over-bearing database state. Not only did the coalition agreement set out a promise to scrap ID cards and its associated population register, there were other promises too: “We will end the storage of internet and email records without good reason” and then on page 25 of the coalition agreement the statement that “We will put patients in charge of making decisions about their care, including control of their health records”.

In our briefing document ‘Privacy Under Threat’ …

Posted in Op-eds and The Independent View | Tagged and | 25 Comments

The Independent View: The bigger picture on privacy

Amongst the frenzy of the phone hacking scandal Philip Virgo has recalled operation Motorman. This investigation by the Information Commissioner and follow-up report What Price Privacy Now studies and provides details of the illegal trade in personal private information. Rather than being limited to the phone hacking scandal, the report suggests this trade was widespread between newspapers, private investigators and corrupt officials.

This report was presented to the previous government that failed to act upon it and halt the illegal trade in personal information. It is with unfortunate irony that members of that previous government including Lord Prescott …

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The Independent View: action is needed to keep census data confidential

So far Lib Dem voice has seen two opposing points of view on the census, one from Merlene Emerson who explains why she believes the census is important, and another from Simon Beard who explains why as a Quaker he will be objecting to it on the moral grounds of Lockheed Martin’s involvement.

NO2ID appreciates why some people have concerns regarding the involvement of an arms company in the census. However as a single issue campaign our concern is with the immediate privacy threat the census poses to everyone. We have therefore taken it upon …

Posted in The Independent View | Tagged , , and | 14 Comments



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarATF 24th Apr - 1:57pm
    Three disconnected thoughts; Broadly speaking, I welcome both the book and this response. We should be a party and liberal movement that embraces and challenges...
  • User AvatarMatt (Bristol) 24th Apr - 1:53pm
    Jeremy, I have been sceptical of what I have read of your book, and critical of your usage of the term 'authentic liberalism', but am...
  • User AvatarSal Brinton 24th Apr - 1:49pm
    Nick's speech was very important, and how encouraging that City Fathers has been set up, and had such a great launch with Nick. When we...
  • User AvatarJennie 24th Apr - 1:42pm
    Still waiting to get hold of a copy here, so I'm not going to comment on the substantive points raised in this piece, but I...
  • User AvatarRaddiy 24th Apr - 1:29pm
    1200 people were at the Sage Gateshead last night to listen to Nigel Farage, all paid £2 for the privilege, half were members and half...
  • User AvatarStephen Tall 24th Apr - 1:26pm
    @ AndrewR I think surveys should try and give an accurate sense of public opinion, just as I think LDV surveys should give an accurate...