Details of draft investigatory powers bill emerge

The Guardian reports:

Theresa May is to propose a major extension of the surveillance state when she publishes legislation requiring internet companies to store details of every website visited by customers over the previous year.

The home secretary will try to sweeten the pill of her revived snooper’s charter on Wednesday by announcing that the police will need to get judicial authorisation before they can access the internet connection records of an individual – something that is currently banned in the US and every European country, including Britain.

She will also try to strengthen the oversight of Britain’s surveillance by replacing the current fragmented system of three separate commissioners with an investigatory powers commissioner who will be a senior judge appointed by the prime minister on the recommendation of the lord chief justice.

…The draft investigatory powers bill will also enshrine in statute GCHQ’s licence to hack into computers worldwide, including powers to sweep up content of a computer or smartphone, listen to phonecalls, track locations or even switch on the microphones or cameras on mobile phones. The powers, known as “computer network exploitation”, even allow them to record conversations or snap pictures of anyone nearby the device.

* News Meerkat - keeping a look-out for Liberal Democrat news. Meerkat photo by Paul Walter

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