Letter - Do you want to be spied on by the state?

DO you want to be spied upon by the state?

The Government has published its draft Communications Data Bill for consideration by a joint committee of MPs and peers before taking it through Parliament in the normal way.

Because of EU law, since 2009 telecoms companies have had to store “header data” for a year. This means the details of which subscriber made a telephone call, sent an email, texted a message or visited a website, when, to where, and for how long.

Under the Bill the police and security services will be permitted to access such information without a warrant. Some experts maintain that it will be impossible to examine it without viewing the actual contents of the communication.

Moreover, at a time of austerity the Bill proposes to reimburse the companies for the cost of storage.

This is estimated at £1,800,000,000 over ten years, not allowing for VAT, inflation and depreciation.

Parliament has a clear choice: to urge the coalition to drop the bill and thus respect our privacy and freedom - or to acquiesce in a measure reminiscent of a police state.

Keith Wells

UK Independence Party

Hornbeam Avenue

Wakefield