Feeds

Top spook: ISP black boxes NOT key to UK's web-snoop plan

We fully expect Google, Facebook and Twitter to hand over your data

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

'Necessary and proportionate' mantra bandied around

Farr told the committee that anything between 500 and 1,000 communication data requests could be submitted for an average murder investigation in the UK. He further explained that criminals would use multiple comms devices and, for example, regularly ditch mobile phones to avoid being sniffed out by police or spooks.

When asked if function-creep would seep into the legislation if successfully passed by Parliament in its current form, Farr said:

The application process is a thorough and very serious bit of work. An applying officer has to seek authority in written form... it has to consider collateral intrusion and needs to be signed off by a senior member of the police force.

Farr said that currently, there was a roughly 25 per cent shortfall on information that spooks and police couldn't get their hands on. He was asked what proportion of that data involved concealment.

"Not very much," the security man responded. "If you have the right kind of data, issues of anonymisation cease to be a problem.

"If people take greater efforts at anonymisation, it could become a problem... but I'm satisfied by the techniques being developed. Many workarounds can be defeated... we are not proposing this law on the grounds that it will provide 100 per cent coverage of the communications data in this country."

Farr admitted "there will still be workarounds" but claimed by 2018 that that gap could be tightened with a new law.

The joint committee of MPs and peers expressed concerns about what parliamentary oversight would be put in place for the proposed legislation.

"I would emphasise that the definition of comms data is set out in existing legislation and there's no change here," Farr said, with subscriber, service and traffic data providing the "essential context" in which such information would be sought.

Lib Dem MP Julian Huppert asked exactly how the estimated £1.8bn price tag for the scheme over the next 10 years had been calculated. "Assumes lots of DPI?" he quizzed.

"It assumes doing some of it," Farr agreed.

Alcock then added that the majority of the costs were related to data retention – with over 50 per cent of that cash being set aside for storage.

Opponents of the bill face the joint committee later today. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
One HUNDRED FAMOUS LADIES exposed NUDE online
Celebrity women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
Rubbish WPS config sees WiFi router keys popped in seconds
Another day, another way in to your home router
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
NZ Justice Minister scalped as hacker leaks emails
Grab your popcorn: Subterfuge and slur disrupts election run up
HP: NORKS' cyber spying efforts actually a credible cyberthreat
'Sophisticated' spies, DIY tech and a TROLL ARMY – report
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?