Feeds

Coalition renames GCHQ internet spook-tech plans

IMP is dead: Long live the £2bn CCDP

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Home Secretary Theresa May said the Labour government's Interception Modernisation Programme (IMP) is coming back to life.

In a speech to Parliament outlining a new counter-terror strategy, or at least its re-branding, May said the government's Counter Terrorism Strategy (aka CONTEST) will include a resurrected Interception Modernisation Programme.

The CONTEST document says: "Legislation will be brought forward to put in place the necessary regulations and safeguards to ensure that the response to this technology challenge [from terrorists using the internet] is compatible with the Government's approach to information storage and civil liberties."

Labour's original IMP was expected to cost £2bn and be based at GCHQ's Concrete Doughnut in Cheltenham. The work was farmed out to EDS – HP's services wing and specialist hoover of government cash. It was intended to make it easier for the spooks to cope with various difficulties they face in the modern era, for instance peer-to-peer communications services such as Skype or torrents.

The IMP plan was widely criticised at the time, which helped stall the project until after the election.

It would appear that IMP is now rebranded as the "Communications Capabilities Development Programme". Apart from P2P threats, this will also be aimed at tackling rapidly-improving encryption technology for voice and text mobile communication.

The Coalition will also push forward with e-borders. The government continues to negotiate with the European Commission over its draft directive because it ruled in 2009 that the UK's collection and storage of such data as a matter of course was illegal.

The Privy Council is looking at the use of intercept evidence in court. It has been looking at this since 2007.

In 2009 it decided it would not be possible to offer such evidence in court. The major stumbling block is providing an evidential framework – showing the court where the evidence came from without exposing the work of the security services. In January Theresa May asked the Council to look at this again.

The Home Office said: "We continue to see no evidence of systematic cyber terrorism. But the first recorded incident of a terrorist 'cyber' attack on corporate computer systems took place in 2010. The co called 'here you have' virus, (the responsibility for which was claimed by the Tariq bin Ziyad Brigades for Electronic Jihad) was relatively unsophisticated but a likely indicator of a future trend.

Officials cautioned that it was difficult to get a clear picture on use of the internet to radicalise people. It said experts' estimates of the number of such websites varied from several hundred to several thousand: "It is clear that a few dozen are highly influential and frequented by terrorists." ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.