German privacy activists cry foul over data retention law
Data logging? Nein danke
Privacy activists have filed a constitutional complaint against Germany's data retention laws.
The objection against the German Telecomms Data Retention Act was filed in federal court on Monday by German privacy group Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung (Working Group on Data Retention). The group said 30,000 people have signed the objection against laws that mean German telecoms carriers are obliged to keep details of internet usage and phone call records for up to two years. The 150-page complaint calls on the court to suspend the law on the grounds of "apparent unconstitutionality".
Alongside its legal moves, Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung has published guidelines and recommendations designed to "safeguard individuals" against the obligatory logging of all telecommunications traffic. Arbeitskreis Vorratsdatenspeicherung argues that the data retention law treats all citizens as potential terrorists or delinquents. "The pervasive logging of communication patterns without reasonable suspicion resembled a serious encroachment upon the basic values of constitutional legality," it said.
Organisations and individuals that rely on confidentiality to do their work - lawyers, journalists and even crisis lines - are deprived of free and open communication because of the data logging, the group claims.
Governments across Europe brought in the measures, which backers argue are necessary in the fight against terrorism and organised crime. Critics argue blanket data retention is disproportionate.
Andy wrote: "How much terrorism was there before George Bush & Co. decided to p*ss off the whole of the muslim world by blaming them for 9/11, invading Iraq on a false pretext and locking up anyone with a vaguely foreign name indefinitely?"
Er... about the same as there is today but without the hysteria and political hand wringing.
AC - "AC: "Terrorism is created by government bastards with their policy decisions."
Sometimes.. more often than not nowadays, it's a result of people accepting religious beliefs as something "sacred" that shouldn't be questioned"
Sorry but thats rubbish. More often than not nowadays terrorism is created by the government to subdue the people and herd them like cattle into a totalitarian big brother state.
How much terrorism was there before George Bush & Co. decided to p*ss off the whole of the muslim world by blaming them for 9/11, invading Iraq on a false pretext and locking up anyone with a vaguely foreign name indefinitely? Next to none.
About the only terrorists we seem to prosecute are the thickos they've managed to coax into saying 'violent jihad' in return for a box of milk tray....
AC: "Terrorism is created by government bastards with their policy decisions."
Sometimes.. more often than not nowadays, it's a result of people accepting religious beliefs as something "sacred" that shouldn't be questioned, or at least be "tolerated". If you tolerate somebody who practices Christianity, they'll create an environment that tolerates somebody who practices fundamentalist Christianity, and they'll in turn create an environment which tolerates extremism. Substitute whichever religion you prefer to think of as evil for Christianity, if you prefer (not that it matters).
The best hope for a future free of religious terrorism is to solidly educate our (and their) children. If you teach a child to think critically and scientifically, questioning everything including the beliefs that their parents hold so dear, then you've got one less terrorist knocking at your door. Also giving a child a non-religious solid moral foundation is important - if it's based on common sense, it can't be perverted, unlike most common religions which can be interpreted many different ways.
Religion should be dinner conversation. Polite be damned - call a horse a horse and a fool a fool.
As for the topic at hand - if the Governments and the law respect due process (and due process is reasonable), and the Government and companies aren't incompetent gits who lose valuable information, I don't see a big problem with the data retention laws.