We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Public bodies to snoop through internet activity records

Records to be kept for a year under 'snooper's charter'

Public bodies such as local councils and health authorities could be given the right to snoop through records of internet activity under  government proposals.

The Home Office plans, which were originally conceived in 2005 after the 7/7 London bombings, would see telecommunications companies made to keep details of internet traffic and VoIP calls for 12 months. The data would be made available to a number of public bodies during crime investigations and public safety threats. However, the proposal did stress that records of the content of the traffic would not be kept.

Dubbed the 'snooper's charter' by some MPs, the proposal will involve storing "a billion incidents of data exchange a day" and could cost taxpayers £46m.

Telecommunications companies already voluntarily store details of internet activity but the Government said it would now become mandatory thanks to a new European directive. It also released plans of a 'super' database that will contain all data on all telephone calls and internet activity.

"This data allows investigators to identify suspects, examine their contacts, establish relationships between conspirators and place them in a specific location at a certain time," said a Home Office spokesman.

See also: Govt spends £18m snooping on emails and calls

Visit Broadband Advisor for the latest internet news, reviews, tips & tricks

Visit Security Advisor for the latest internet threat news, FREE net threat email newsletters, and internet security product reviews


IDG UK Sites

Nokia branding killed in place of 'Microsoft Lumia': Windows Phone moves into new era

IDG UK Sites

Why you shouldn't buy the iPad mini 3: No wonder Apple gave it 10 seconds of stage time

IDG UK Sites

Halloween Photoshop tutorials: 13 masterclasses for horrifying art, designs and type

IDG UK Sites

Should you update your iPhone or iPad to iOS 8? iOS 8.1 brings back Camera Roll, adds Apple Pay in...