Today's Draft RIP Code on Access to Telecoms Information - 'far too wide, with too few protections'

13 August 2001

The Government today sent out a consultation on the Draft Code of Practice for Chapter II of Part 1 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000. The Draft Code covers the obtaining of information by public authorities from a postal or telecoms system John Wadham, director of Liberty, says:
"This new code of practice will give the police and other agencies permission to obtain massive amounts of information about our use of the telephone, emails and the internet.

"Whilst some of our communications are trivial and of no interest to anyone, all of us make some very private calls which are not the business of anyone else.

"This Code does not protect our privacy because the police and many other agencies will be able to force the disclosure of this information. They do not have to obtain a warrant and the list of reasons why they can authorise themselves to seek this information is very long indeed. What we need to protect our personal information is a Privacy Act".