Speaking on London’s LBC radio this morning, British Deputy PM Nick Clegg dealt what many perceive to be a fatal blow to the Communications Data Bill. Clegg said, “What people dub the Snoopers’ Charter, that’s not going to happen” explaining that mass spying on citizens was “not either necessarily workable nor proportionate”.
The Open Rights Group (ORG) believe that this statement is a sign that the public’s campaigning and protest against the bill has paid off and it appears as though many of the unpopular proposals in the bill will be dropped before it is announced in the Queen’s Speech on May 8th.
They hope that this represents an end in the British government’s efforts to introduce legislation that would easily allow them access to the online communications of all their citizens, however they warn people that we still need to be cautious, because it is unlikely that this is the end of the fight for our privacy. We may have won a battle, but the war wages on.
ORG Executive Director Jim Killock warns people to keep their eyes open to ensure that any new proposals do not include a request filter and data trawling engine, that the data ISPs and CSPs are required to collect is minimal and the government do not try to create new data sets.
Killock stated that the ORG will be closely scrutinizing the Queen’s Speech to ensure that the government does not try to introduce any legislation that will infringe on the rights of their citizens and assure their supporters that they will not let their guard down.
In an email sent round to supporters, Killock stated: “ORG are at the front of campaigning to protect your civil liberties and we couldn’t have done it without the help of our supporters. This is a great triumph at the end of two years of campaigning to stop this massive affront to the right to privacy.”