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SCL Foundations of IT Law Programme

Investigatory Powers Bill

The long awaited Bill has now been published

The spinners and commenters finally have a draft Bill, something to spin (again) and some concrete proposals to comment on.

The full text is here.

For a quick, but remarkably detailed, overview, see Neil Brown's article here.

The 'overarching documents' are available here.

Comment from SCL members is encouraged, whether by using the comments box below or by sending longer comments to [email protected]

Comment from Pravin Kothari, founder and CEO of cloud security company, CipherCloud:

"Though the Home Secretary positions the bill as a departure from the 'snooper's charter,' the word 'disclosure' appears 182 times. The push to mandate data retention by ISPs and to allow warrantless access for investigators will certainly expand law enforcement's surveillance capabilities – to the detriment of personal privacy. 

"As a technologist, I believe in the power of technology to solve problems. In times like these when fear-driven bills compromise the right to privacy, we can look to security tools, such as encryption, to defend online communications from unwanted access."

Comment from Toby Duthie, Partner & Co Founder, Forensic Risk Alliance:

 "The Draft Investigatory Powers Bill, if passed, just adds to the increasing regulatory burden facing companies in the ICT space. It will dramatically impact the amount of data they need to retain. Meanwhile, the European Court of Justice scraps Safe Harbour restricting the ability of companies to move data between the EU and the US. So more data, more restrictions and next year the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is likely to be approved which will cover all EU states and sets out a draconian fines regime (up to 5% of global annual turnover). Tough regulatory times for ICT companies and it is only going to get more severe."

Published: 04/11/2015

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