Thursday, March 19, 2009

UK government considers bugging all net traffic

The UK government is considering a move that would have far-reaching privacy implications: storing all messages sent through web mail and social networking applications.
Under the EU Data Retention Directive, EU member states–including the UK–are required to retain telephone and email records of their citizens. UK Home Office security minister Vernon Coaker thinks the government could go further and retain details of instant messaging and social networking messages.
Under the proposals, all Internet traffic would be subject to deep packet inspection, with details of any communication being harvested and recorded in a massive government-controlled central database. The UK government has repeatedly stated that it believes such surveillance is vital in the fight against terrorism and launched their Intercept Modernization Program (IMP) last year; a project designed to ensure that the government retains the capability to intercept and monitor what UK citizens do and say on the Internet.

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