Hacking away safeguards from mass surveillance…British Government sneakily enacts legislation to exempt the security services from laws against hacking

Posted: 17 May, 2015 in Snoopers Charter
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Read more UK Government Watch at MelonFarmers.co.uk

arms of the british governmentjpg logo The British government sneakily changed anti-hacking laws to exemptGCHQ and other law enforcement agencies from criminal prosecution, ithas been revealed.Details of the change became apparent at the Investigatory Powers Tribunal which is hearing a challenge to the legality of computer hacking by UK law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

The Government amended the Computer Misuse Act (CMA) two months ago. It used a little-noticed addition to the Serious Crime Bill going through parliament to provide protection for the intelligence services. The change was introduced just weeks after the Government faced a legal challenge that GCHQ’s computer hacking to gather intelligence was unlawful under the CMA.

Eric King, the deputy director of Privacy International, said:

The underhand and undemocratic manner in which the Government is seeking to make lawful GCHQ’s hacking operations is disgraceful.

Hacking is one of the most intrusive surveillance capabilities available to any intelligence agency, and its use and safeguards surrounding it should be the subject of proper debate. Instead, the Government is continuing to neither confirm nor deny the existence of a capability it is clear they have, while changing the law under the radar.


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