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ISPA knocks UK e-commerce bill

Too much emphasis on encryption and not enough on e-commerce

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The government's attempt to introduce e-commerce legislation has been branded as "overly complicated" by industry leaders in the UK. The Internet Services Providers Association (ISPA) -- the UK trade organisation for ISPs -- said too much emphasis was placed on policing the Net and not enough was being spent on e-commerce itself. According to ISPA, 20 pages of the e-commerce bill deal with enforcing laws on the Net. Only three pages relate to the legal recognition of electronic signatures and contracts. "What should have been a sensible move forward for the economy has been further delayed because some of the contentious issues seem to have lost any chance of cross-party support," said Tim Pearson, chairman of ISPA. "It appears to be an overly complicated bill that still seems to be suffering from the echoes of the key escrow debate," he said. While ISPA is in favour of "sensible law-enforcement measures" it believes some of the government's proposals are simply "too strong." It will publish a formal response within the next two months. ®

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