Thursday, 15 October 2015

They don’t like it up em

Image result for they don't like it up emA tribunal has found that MPs can be spied on by GCHQ just like everyone else.

But in a landmark decision the Investigatory Powers Tribunal said the so-called "Wilson Doctrine" was no bar to the incidental collection of data.

The Wilson Doctrine was a 1966 assertion that MPs calls would never be intercepted without the PM knowing.  According to the BBC, it has been reaffirmed ever since, including by Cameron.

Caroline Lucas MP is calling this “a body blow for parliamentary democracy,".  I can’t quite follow her reasoning.  It’s OK to spy on everyone except the people in charge?

"My constituents have a right to know that their communications with me aren't subject to blanket surveillance - yet this ruling suggests that they have no such protection.

"Parliamentarians must be a trusted source for whistleblowers and those wishing to challenge the actions of the government. That's why upcoming legislation on surveillance must include a provision to protect the communications of MPs, peers, MSPs, AMs and MEPs from extra-judicial spying.

It’s almost as though banning strong encryption is a seriously stupid idea.  I have to say, though, that if you’re whistleblowing to an MP, you are doing it very wrong indeed.

"The prime minister has been deliberately ambiguous on this issue - showing utter disregard for the privacy of those wanting to contact parliamentarians."

But it’s OK to disregard the privacy of those wanting to contact journalists or, for example anyone else?

Maybe now we’ll see a few MPs coming out on the side of privacy.

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