Feeds

Big brother gets Web 2.0 makeover

Information sharing for the people

SANS - Survey on application security programs

That's fair enough, as The Guardian newspaper reported. But it did all sound rather like Armstrong was trying to catch some of the Web 2.0 magic dust and sprinkle it over the government's more controversial ideas for information sharing.

But are we putting two and two together to make five? Steinberg himself prefers to call the web phenomenon social media rather than information sharing. He told The Register that his review wouldn't touch on the government's Information Sharing Vision: "I know these are really important issues, but this report's not about them. It's about information that's public."

Yet Guy Herbert, general secretary of the NO2ID campaign group said he believed the Cabinet Office's wider use of the term information sharing was no coincidence: "The DCA and the PM's delivery office have decided they want to abolish confidentiality, data protection, and ultra vires, as regards official use of information, and the attack is on several fronts."

Part of its method was to sell the benefits of information sharing in general. Then further, by aggrandising the idea that information sharing would create an omniscient state that could use its extensive knowledge of ordinary people's lives to make helpful interventions. Bad people would be stopped before they would do anything wrong.

It is a utopian vision, indeed. And certainly science fiction, no? Perhaps not. NO2ID's parliamentary briefing on the Serious Crime Bill noted how this philosophy had already been worked into policy.

"In common with other data-sharing powers recently brought forward by the government, there is an attempt to vitiate data protection, rights to private life and common law confidentiality by legislative sleight-of-hand. Some of the regulatory powers granted make a mockery of ultra vires and parliamentary oversight. This is consistent with the government's Information Sharing Vision statement, if not with the rule of law," it said.

Steinberg's review, as Armstrong put it, will not consider how the government might tame the web, but how it might encourage certain parts of it. The government wants to see how it can make the web better.

"The key question might be, in relation to the health and vibrancy and effectiveness [of the web], is there anything the government should be doing," said Steinberg.

Leave well alone, perhaps? ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
Judge halts spread of zombie Nortel patents to Texas in Google trial
Epic Rockstar patent war to be waged in California
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
Edward Snowden on his Putin TV appearance: 'Why all the criticism?'
Denies Q&A cameo was meant to slam US, big-up Russia
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.