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114 comments

Luckily I live in the.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298525)

colonies and not suspected to so much snooping.

So, what kind of tea or Chickletts do you sell? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298635)

Yea I bet you love having neighbors like Sir E. Coli and Countess Linda Cielo der Himmler just around Pink avenue. At least in the states, Hillary Rosen is reduced from the Music Ministry of Recording to be an incorporated dyke in the RIAA Navy.

Your Friendly Local GNAA Rep (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298527)

fr1st ps0t!

Re:Your Friendly Local GNAA Rep (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298583)

CAPTCHA was: evades
And now: multiply

To use them in a sentence, them goddamn evasive niggers keep multiplyin' like jack rabbits.

Left on a train (4, Funny)

JohnHegarty (453016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298537)

At least it's less lightly to be left on the train, if it's not in government hands.

Re:Left on a train (4, Insightful)

Yacoby (1295064) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298615)

At least it's less lightly to be left on the train, if it's not in government hands.

To be replaced by the private company selling it to the highest bidder?

Re:Left on a train (3, Insightful)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298783)

Yes, because the private companies never screw up.

Re:Left on a train (1)

kno3 (1327725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298975)

I hope that that is sarcastic!
Look at how well the private company contracted to organise and mark SATs did, they have now abolished them at KS3 because they f**ked it up so badly.
I wish the government could learn that its far more sensible to do the job properly yourself than paying the private sector to do it.

Re:Left on a train (1)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299007)

Governments outsource plenty, and have for a very long time. Sometimes doing a job sensibly means knowing when to let someone with better-developed capabilities handle it.

Re:Left on a train (1)

Foobar of Borg (690622) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299073)

Governments outsource plenty, and have for a very long time. Sometimes doing a job sensibly means knowing when to let someone with better-developed capabilities handle it.

Quite true to a point. The problem is that the UK government, and especially the current US administration, seems to believe that privatizing government functions is some kind of cure-all. Yes, there are many functions that should be privatized, but there are so many things being privatized (roads, General Jim's Army [a.k.a. Blackwater et al.]) that should stay within the sphere of government.

Re:Left on a train (1)

daveime (1253762) | more than 5 years ago | (#26302061)

Yes well it cures-all aspects of culpability when shit gets left in public places ... "Oh, sorry, we realise that it was us who wanted to know every aspect of your online habits (for the children doncha-know), but it wasn't us who lost it, it was the (non prosecutable) corporates we outsourced to.

Re:Left on a train (2, Insightful)

kno3 (1327725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299109)

Governments outsource plenty, and have for a very long time.

This is true, however weather it is sensible I'm not so sure. All comes down to trust in the end, do you trust the private sector with all your details? And do you trust them to behave ethically when the inevitable conflicts of interests occur?
I personally do not, and would nationalise everything that could be, banks, land, public transport, etc... but that's just me.

Re:Left on a train (1)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300293)

My first reaction to nationalization is usually negative. I see the government as a stifling force, too easily caught up in its bureaucracy to function efficiently. They are a better manager than they are a technician. I think that is how the framers of the constitution saw it, too.

Additionally, endowing the government with such control is dangerous. Control equals power. "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." That is already evident in our government, as well as many others in the world. And no, I don't mean something obvious like the wiretapping crap.

Nationalization is similar to generalization: what you want to do is now a factor of what is good for the whole of the population. Do you really want your bank run by the government? I am happy to let the FDIC insure my funds, but I don't want a senate committee managing the bank.

Granted, much of this type of control already exists, and I think it is a problem. The government has extended its reach beyond facilitator and manager and wants to actually do stuff. Congressmen are now statesmen first and have lost touch with what it means to be a citizen. They no longer have to return to their states to tend to crops or other primary vocations/occupations. This self-importance has turned into a desire to make themselves more than what they are; they have forgotten they are public servants and that they work in our employ.

I would never willingly give these idiots more power. It will only make them huff and puff harder, and will eventually lead to a bleak, Orwellian future.

Re:Left on a train (2)

Requiem18th (742389) | more than 5 years ago | (#26301291)

Do you really want your bank run by the government?

Hell no! I want it to be run by greedy bastards that over lend sink the nation in debt and then crawl to the government crying for bailout money then attempt to pocket has much of that money into their accounts as possible.

  What we need is a small government that just ensures taxes are properly conducted to nice millionaires.

Re:Left on a train (1)

kno3 (1327725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26301549)

Well, as I said, it is a question of trust. You have the view that politicians are idiots. I don't think this and I feel that it is incredibly unfair, and unrealistic. The press does its best to portray politicians as idiots, and I am pretty sure this is where this view comes from. Overall I trust my politicians, I think that for the most part, they are trying to help the nation, and the world, yes sometimes they go about it incorrectly, but that is just a matter of opinion. I don't think that the same can be said of the private sector. Esso, Microsoft, Nike... these companies have a lot of power, are completely unelected, and have behaved in an extremely unethical manner. I don't trust the people running these companies as far as I can throw them.

I think that government can extend their reach beyond management, it is a good thing. I think that they can do things better and safer than the private sector, and it is certainly more democratic that way.

Re:Left on a train (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 5 years ago | (#26303749)

I see the government as a stifling force, too easily caught up in its bureaucracy to function efficiently.

The government is supposed to be inefficient. That way, any change will take long enough for concerned citizens to react. Inefficiency in the government is not a bug, it's a feature. And an important feature at that, for a democratic government must be inefficient. Democratic control is not efficient enough in itself to keep an efficient government under control.

Do you really want your bank run by the government?

Yes, I do. That way, I can be certain I can get my money out again, even if they have to print brand new money just for me; and I can be certain that I have plenty of chance to react to any "brilliant" investment scheme thought up by the CEO.

Re:Left on a train (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 5 years ago | (#26303613)

More to the point, seeing how the private business interests run everything anyway, why not cut out the middleman ?

Hooray for Crapita et al. (1)

u38cg (607297) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298549)

Hardly surprising, considering the public sectors long and colourful history of IT debacles. See El Reg and Private Eye ad nauseum. One more reason to SSL all my traffic to a proxy somewhere (anywhere) else.

Re:Hooray for Crapita et al. (1)

Uber Banker (655221) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299535)

Easy answer... SSH everything to a server the UK has no jurisdiction over.

It's not that hard.

Whats new? (1)

spj524 (526706) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298555)

The US does this now. There evidently are quite a few companies out there that specialize in gathering intel for nations.

I think I was listening to someone on NPR talk about this not too long ago.. Maybe the guy who wrote Shadow Factory?

Re:Whats new? (3, Informative)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298791)

What's new is the scope of this database - the goal is to contain details of every single communication in the country. Information about every website accessed, every phone call made, every e-mail sent would be recorded in a database held by the government (or their appointed company), although not their contents (for now).

Previously this data wasn't collected in a central location and was only gathered from providers as required by criminal investigations etc, but the goal here would be that the government should have every bit of communications data directly at hand at all times, even if it's not suspect in any fashion.

Re:Whats new? (1)

Kagura (843695) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299281)

There's already plenty of precedent for this kind of activity. It's not unheard of to collect and store tons of unnecessary information, not all of which is encompassed by the warrant (for example, if you're wiretapping a guy who's under investigation for something and you get private information about non-related people because he happened to call his mom or dad to say 'hi'). You're allowed to legally store information that you are not legally allowed to collect on, but you're not allowed to do anything with the information (like present it in court) unless it was encompassed by a warrant or other permission.

I don't actually know if you can go get "after-the-fact, we-just-happened-to-hear-about-this-crime-committed-by-someone-else" warrants. I'm pretty sure that in 99% of all cases, after-the-fact or out-right illegal use of collected intel does not happen.

Re:Whats new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26300775)

Not sure why you'd choose Intel in this case.. Everyone knows AMD is cheaper performance per watt.

Slippery slope (4, Insightful)

slugtastic (1437569) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298569)

Senior Whitehall officials responsible for planning for a new database say there is a significant difference between having access to "communications data" - names and addresses of emails or telephone numbers, for example - and the actual contents of the communications. "We have been very clear that there are no plans for a database containing any content of emails, texts or conversations," the spokeswoman said.

Pretty slip indeed.

Re:Slippery slope (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298623)

no plans for a database

"Oops, your communications data got in my database!"
"Hey, your database is encapsulating my communications data!"

- brought to you by Hershey's Reese's Foreign Government Datamining Division. We care about your data.

We're screwed (5, Funny)

Linker3000 (626634) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298589)

And as Jacqui drafts the invitation to tender document in Word - up pops clippy...

"I see you are outsourcing Government IT requirements. What level of cock-up and overspend do you want?

Shall I insert the address for:

a) EDS
b) Capita
c) SAP
d) IBM
"

Re:We're screwed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298967)

e) The Securitate.

They bring previous experience to the table after having monitored all voice and electronic communications in and out of Romania for Ceausescu. They bugged telephones and intercepted all telegraphs and telex messages, as well as placing microphones in both public and private buildings. Nearly all conversations conducted in Communist Romania would have been listened to by this department.

One of the reasons for doing this was to fight terrorism. So I believe they are the best choice comrade.

Re:We're screwed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299001)

e) Blue Sun

missed the issue (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298663)

Don't be concerned at who is holding the data rather be concerned that the data is actually being collected.... (it's probably safer if the government isn't managing this anyway)

Re:missed the issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26300027)

(it's probably safer if the government isn't managing this anyway)

Safer for the government bureaucrats who want to hide exactly what they're doing with the data? Definitely.

Safer for the people who need to keep government abuses in check? Absolutely not.

Whenever your leaders start outsourcing to the private sector or relocating operations to oppressive regimes be warned. They are outsourcing blame and accountability as well.

It just amazes me (1)

DreamsAreOkToo (1414963) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298671)

It just amazes me how STUPID our governments are nowadays. I mean, we used to put up posters about how "loose lips sink ships" and now we want to trust our "intelligence gathering" to "private" firms that'll inevitably end up in India?

This reminds me of the article about how China is salvaging old consumer microchips, relabeling them as military grade, and selling them to the pentagon as "brand new." I hope it makes people feel better knowing that those lethal weapons and bombs we have cached everywhere have the reliability of your worst gadget ever.

Intelligence and military manufacturing MUST stay within the borders, period.

Re:It just amazes me (1)

mad_robot (960268) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298863)

For some reason I read that as "loose lips pink slips".

I guess what the government has realized is that cock-ups are inevitable. By outsourcing this work they can put someone else in the firing line next time it all goes wrong.

Nothing is going to improve until we take a stand against this culture of state-sponsored snooping.

Re:It just amazes me (1)

thedonger (1317951) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299055)

This reminds me of the article about how China is salvaging old consumer microchips

Is that why my military-grade computer has only 3583 bytes free when it starts up?

Standard practice (5, Insightful)

Burnhard (1031106) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298679)

I'm afraid this is standard practice. Outsourcing allows those in charge to blame the company or corporation for any theft or data loss, not government ministers.

Re:Standard practice (1)

dnwq (910646) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298755)

That's because governments are too incompetent and stupid to do anything themselves, don't you know that! [/groupthink]

Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (5, Insightful)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298699)

What the hell is wrong with that woman? More to the point, what the hell is wrong with us? In any sane society a person like that would've been strung up from a lamppost a long time ago.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298735)

FBI tip line emailed.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (2, Insightful)

u38cg (607297) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298787)

If you think that a sane society is one that strings people up to a lamp-post for saying things you disagree with, then I'll stick to being insane. Truth will out; mob lynchings should not be necessary.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300217)

Yes. Lets have another cuppa and roll out the red carpet for those who are no better than the fascists we fought again two generations ago. The killing of Mussolini was such an act of insanity, they should've just written a strongly worded letter to il duce

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (2)

ultranova (717540) | more than 5 years ago | (#26301185)

Yes. Lets have another cuppa and roll out the red carpet for those who are no better than the fascists we fought again two generations ago.

Fascists - you mean those people infamous for killing lots of people because they didn't like them ? That's the best example you could come up with to justify lynch mobs ? The most infamous lynch mob in history ?

As for your idiotic strawman, no, you don't have to roll out the red carpet for fascists. You have many tools in your disposal to oppose them: the soap box, the ballot box, the jury box, and only as the absolute last rest, the ammo box. Do not confuse the order; for I, for one, do not welcome another Krystalnacht.

The killing of Mussolini was such an act of insanity, they should've just written a strongly worded letter to il duce

By the time he was killed, Mussolini was no longer Il Duce. He had been deposed and was fleeing. He was already beaten. The only thing killing him did was make it impossible to drag his ass into court to try him like any other criminal. It was a victory for fascism; which, ultimately, is simply one variance of the old idea that "might makes right".

Mussolini wasn't beaten by democracy or freedom; he was killed by fascism. He was shot by people who thought like him: I have a gun, therefore I am law.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (0)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#26303199)

You are confusing fascism with resistance to fascism. There is a moral difference between state violence motivated by expediency and citizen violence against the state motivated by outrage.

You have many tools in your disposal to oppose them: the soap box,

They control the media, and I can't shout loud enough. I could build a transmitter to get my views out but I would be arrested. There is always the Internet, but unless this post kicks off an anti-government protest, I think it is safe to say that will not work

the ballot box,

A choice between several different authoritarian corporate shills. Won't change a thing.

the jury box,

Spoken like someone who has never worked for the UK 'justice' system

and only as the absolute last rest, the ammo box. Do not confuse the order; for I, for one, do not welcome another Krystalnacht.

You are a moron, a sheep and a coward. Fear of violence is not pacifism, its just fear.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (4, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298837)

What the hell is wrong with that woman? More to the point, what the hell is wrong with us? In any sane society a person like that would've been strung up from a lamppost a long time ago.

She's the product of a party which is obsessed with micromanaging the citizens of the country. A party which got to power by ruthlessly instilling discipline within its own membership - in other words, "follow the party line to the letter or get out".

Jack Straw and David Blunkett were almost as bad. Tony Blair has openly gone on record as saying that he doesn't consider the civil liberties argument against ID cards to be a particularly strong one.

There is no fscking chance you'll find anyone in a remotely senior position within the current Labour party who's prepared to contradict the party line - particularly when the arguments presented in favour always boil down to "it will drastically reduce crime" - never something that's easy to argue against.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (3, Insightful)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299141)

She's the product of a party which is obsessed with micromanaging the citizens of the country. A party which got to power by ruthlessly instilling discipline within its own membership - in other words, "follow the party line to the letter or get out".

LOL WUT?

Have you ever been a member of the Labour Party? Pretty much every meeting I went to was devoted to people carping about the leadership.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (3, Informative)

replicant108 (690832) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299679)

That's a nice theory, but it's actually not about the party. The Home Office has been pushing for these powers since long before New Labour came to power.

In fact, the Tories under John Major were pushing for ID cards in 1995 - a move opposed, ironically by Tony Blair [the-statio...fice.co.uk] .

If you think that a Tory government will be any different then, you will be sorely disappointed.

http://www.privacyinternational.org/article.shtml?cmd%5B347%5D=x-347-61886 [privacyinternational.org]

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300855)

Insightful my arse, the Torries would be no different. as proved here [privacyinternational.org] *

*link provided by replicant108 (690832) above

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298915)

UK citizens, get on this: http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/Anti-Big-Brother/ [number10.gov.uk]

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

CmdrSammo (1086973) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299045)

Please mods, wherever you are from mod parent up, do it for England! It has been known for the government to actually act on these petitions (or at least comment), and I've just added only the 70th signature. I personally can't wait to finish at university and get out of this rapidly sinking ship I call home, although to be honest most countries that have a similar culture (Europe/US) seem to all be going downhill...bugger...

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (5, Informative)

xaxa (988988) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299241)

I've signed several of those petitions. They do nothing -- someone writes a response, and the issue is then ignored.

If you have the time, write to your MP. Go here: http://www.writetothem.com/ [writetothem.com]
I haven't written to my MP yet, but I have written to the Mayor of London a couple of times. I received real, written responses and felt it was a much better use of my time than signing 10 spur-of-the-moment petitions. I'm currently waiting for a response from Boris Johnstone after responding to his transport policy document.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

funkatron (912521) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299115)

Why bother? You'll only get an email in a few months explaining why they're going to do it anyway.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

drspliff (652992) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300711)

Yes, it is strange that every petition I've been informed enough about and seen as valid enough to sign, has ended up being ignored with some very vague reasons.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26301277)

Why bother? You'll only get an email in a few months explaining why they're going to do it anyway.

Obviously the only solution is violence.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299621)

You might also want to join an organisation like Liberty [liberty-hu...hts.org.uk]

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298977)

What the hell is wrong with that woman? More to the point, what the hell is wrong with us? In any sane society a person like that would've been strung up from a lamppost a long time ago.

I think what is wrong with Citizen Smith is clear. If you look at her, she's a woman who is neither attractive nor intelligent. She's obese too. I wold guarantee she was unpopular in school. Her brooding resentment of her then peers has resulted in her current state of mind -- revenge. Her weight denotes her greediness and her insecurity. She's now taking it all out on the rest of us -- the people she's hated since she was a little girl.

Why anyone voted for such an obviously flawed person is beyond me. Now she's in power, she has flourished under the Neues Arbeit Regime much as Himmler and Goebbels did under Hitler, and for the same reasons.

As to the lamppost, ultimately that may be where we are headed. Dictatorships always fall eventually, and usually bloodily. She most surely would be one of the first against the wall.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

Admiral Ag (829695) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300349)

We don't live in a sane society. Most people don't care if the government does this, because they believe that the government will only ever look at your email if you do something wrong.

People talk about freedom, but they don't care about it as long as no-one is stopping them buying useless shit to fill up their house with.

Re:Jackboots Jacqui strikes again (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300825)

What the hell is wrong with us? In any sane society a person like that would've been strung up from a lamppost a long time ago.

The problem is we don't have a choice. The Tories are making a fuss about the speaker allowing the police to conduct an investigation in the house of commons (something that is IMHO fine) and quietly forgetting that they pushed through the anti-terror legislation that caused the entire problem. The liberal democrats and other fringe parties, that may care about our freedom simply don't stand a chance under the first past the post system.

Please... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298733)

Come one now Wacky J., a joke's a joke, we've had a laugh, a few giggles, when are you going to do your job properly?!

Has anyone, from a sane country, got any room left? I want to leave the UK now, please?

Re:Please... (4, Informative)

xaxa (988988) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298785)

Has anyone, from a sane country, got any room left? I want to leave the UK now, please?

Well, you can choose any country in the EU with no difficulty. Anywhere in the EEA isn't much harder. Some Commonwealth countries, like Canada, Australia and New Zealand, want skilled immigrants.

Or you could just complain about it online :-).

Re:Please... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298871)

He asked for a sane country. "Any country in the EU" won't do.

I live in Finland. We here have internet censorship.

It is illegal to question holocaust in France. (Not that I personally would deny it but making it illegal to deny takes it off the list of sane countries)

I could probably find examples from most other countries too. It is really hard to find a western country which still respects freedom.

Switzerland would do but they have pretty strict immigration policy...

Re:Please... (1)

xaxa (988988) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299161)

He asked for a sane country. "Any country in the EU" won't do.

Ah, sorry, I missed the "sane" part. Many other EU countries seem saner than the UK, although from my point of view here in the UK I'm sure some of that is just "the grass looking greener".

Re:Please... (1)

cheros (223479) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299613)

Immigration is easy for EU residents - AFAIK no problem as long as you have a job to go to..

Re:Please... (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299983)

Most EU countries already have mandatory ID cards and just as much, or more, government interference and corruption.

I suppose there's always Somalia.

Re:Please... (1)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#26303235)

That isn't a bad idea. I could sell my technical skills to the pirates of the sea to the northeast of Africarrrr!

Re:Please... (1)

pjt33 (739471) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299291)

My initial response was that running to another EU country won't help, because this data collection is mandated by an EU directive. Then it occurred to me that Greece probably won't implement it for another 10 years.

Re:Please... (2, Insightful)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298847)

Has anyone, from a sane country, got any room left? I want to leave the UK now, please?

As a UK citizen, I am currently considering moving to one of several insane countries!

Re:Please... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299823)

As a UK citizen, I am currently considering moving to one of several insane countries!

sane:
1: proceeding from a sound mind : rational

Having your country decide what's rational or not is the totalitarian way. I guess an insane country would be a country that is irrational to boot, but that wouldn't make it better. The best countries are indifferent, they don't have an opinion at all. In the US declaration of independence it said one of your inalienable rights is "pursuit of happiness" that never really made it into the constitution, because what does it really mean? To me it's a default, a "0th" right that says that everyone should be given as much freedom as reasonably possible to pursue their own, individual happiness.

You don't have to be violating anyone's human rights to infringe on it, unnecessary meddling is enough. If I feel yellow polka dot pants look great, then I should be able to wear them. Even if a majority thinks they're ugly as sin. In fact, even if I'm the only person in the whole wide world that likes them you shoouldn't be able to outlaw them. Freedom is the right to do irrational things, to do crazy things, to live life the way it makes you happy. Every time we've collected vast quantities of information on people we begin to meddle. It seems to be in their nature to dictate and control how other people live their lives and to measure it up to their standards and their rules.

Privacy is our protection, noone can meddle with what they do not know and can not see. Those that say "if you got nothing to hide, you got nothing to fear" have completely and utterly failed history and psychology. There's plenty intolerance to go around, in slightly different variations than before but it's still not safe to pose in a pirate hat with a cup of unspecified swag so your employer might see. If I was doing something naughty I'd cover it well, so that long before you started touching people's dirty little secrets you'd have their life on file, ready for inspection.

It's amazing like people act as if Gestapo, STASI and the KGB were myths from the ancient past rather than fairly recent example of gross meddling with people's lives. Throughout history, occupants and terrorists have been a relatively small threat to the people. It is by far the oppressors like the communist, facist, fundamentalist and other totalitarian regimes that are the true threats. But all ahead full speed in that direction in the name of stopping the few, scattered terrorists. That is truly an insane country - and it's contagious too.

Re:Please... (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26300063)

But all ahead full speed in that direction in the name of stopping the few, scattered terrorists.

I must take issue with your suggestion that repressive, badly-thought out and intrusive laws are promoted under the excuse of combatting terrorists.

It's terrorists and paedophiles, didn't you get the memo?

Re:Please... (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 5 years ago | (#26301069)

Having your country decide what's rational or not is the totalitarian way. I guess an insane country would be a country that is irrational to boot, but that wouldn't make it better.

I have actually lived in countries where the head of state appeared to be criminally insane, and IMHO, at least it is more fun than our present regime. A government that is incapable of doing anything may not be much good, but they are incapable of doing much wrong either. The present UK government has the power to make enormous numbers of peoples' lives misery, and does not have the skill to do anything useful.

The police are already a bigger threat than the terrorists - you are very unlikely to be killed by a terrorist, but you are virtually certain to be charged with some petty offence like parking or speeding, or "driving in the rich people's area" (congestion charge) and fined a disproportionate amount, administered in such a way that it is not practical to defend yourself.

In third world countries, where you routinely have to pay the police, at least the amount they demand is usually quite small.

Re:Please... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299789)

I moved already, I saw this coming very early on with New Labour. But I had the benefit of a security clearance where I could see all this Orwellian control desire spread through government. When spin is more important than any value for citizens it's time to pack up - bullshit does not serve anyone but the speaker itself.

If you want to stay I can only recommend you go very hard on transparency, audit and compliance. Ask why the NAO missed all the abuse in the ID Card program, ask why so many IT projects get screwed up, and start a list of who goes where after serving in government at mid and high level. And ask how a nation could go to war on a lie..

Oh, and insist on CCTV transparency. If they can watch you you should be entitled to watch them.

As for where to go, I came across a bit of irony. The Swiss laws on privacy are actually weaker than the EU ones. However, they are much better enforced because the people themselves value discretion - they don't actually need a law to tell them this. Your problem is that getting to Switzerland isn't hard - staying there is. Thanks to the mess that the US (and UK) have created they have a crisis too. Not as hard hitting, but a crisis nevertheless.

I wish you luck in finding a new home. Know, however, that leaving the Panoptikon [wikipedia.org] is easier than losing the feeling of being in one.

Which is exactly the idea..

It costs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298749)

less... makes perfect sense

or not... I mean it might not make perfect sense and it might actually cost more... oh well, politicians.

ITIL (4, Funny)

retech (1228598) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298809)

Everything will be fine. Whoever it is will have to be ITIL certified. And a good certification guarantees a perfect outcome.

nig6a (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298823)

practical purposes w4ere it b3longs,

?worse? than anarchy ever thought of being? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298897)

the corepirate nazis have robbed US blind. now, they need to spy on US/each other, to see how we deal with that, whilst they now rob US more openly. dissension remains frowned upon/?unpatriotic???

We can't afford to do it to you... (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26298909)

...so we are going to insist that you do it to yourselves.

I wonder when the British people will realize that the cost of non-compliance will be nothing if no one complies.

Facism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26298989)

Isn't this pretty much text book facism? replacing the govenment aparatus with that of comercial interests.

How could it go wrong? (1)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299047)

Hasn't privatisation gone just a little too far this time? I mean it's bad enough that the UK is planning to spy like this on all it's citizens, but to outsource it to contractors?

If they outsource it to anyone, they should outsource it to google. They already know all our personal stuff anyway!

Good Luck with That... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299103)

Short of monitoring and recording all tcp/udp socket connections between every internet connected device worldwide building such a database remains a deluded paranoid propaganda excercise.

No they're not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299177)

Since I'm running my own TLS capable mail server and personally use a console based reader via SSH, the only way they get comprehensive data is by asking me for it. Likewise any web page I wouldn't want turning up in a local council fishing expedition will be requested via a SSH tunnel with an endpoint outside the UK. I have a legitimate reason (work -- I'm self employed) to be connecting and transfering data to and from such machines.

We call our home secretary "Wacky Jaqui" for a reason.

People who have something to hide, can. (3, Interesting)

QJimbo (779370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299255)

The thing about this whole database, is that it will only be able to log activity of people who don't think they have anything to hide, in other words, you and me. The average person.

Criminals can just SSH tunnel everything through a server in some far away country. They will have no idea what those people are doing.

So forgive me for seeing this as just an invasion of privacy as opposed to any serious way of fighting crime.

Re:People who have something to hide, can. (2, Insightful)

janrinok (846318) | more than 5 years ago | (#26299609)

Until they make the use of SSH tunnels or even encryption illegal. After all, if you have nothing to hide, why would you even consider using either? - or so their argument will go.

All suckered as intended (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26299395)

This was given to the slipshod Guardian hacks precisely in order to provoke this reaction. They haven't understood what they were being told, which is that some outsourcing (not "a private sector company to do it all") would be one of the options in a consultation document to be issued later. This could mean no more (and probably doesn't mean any more) than forcing ISPs and Telcos to do archiving themselves in standardised searchable form, as a hopped-up version of the new Data Retention Regulations.

Of course the lefty hacks (who despite being notionally specialists in Home Affairs are twisted round the Home Office's little finger) get excited about "privatisation"... and divert all their energy, and that of their readers, into whining about that, rather than the principle involved of doing it at all.

Meanwhile the shadow of that 'option' is a great way of getting the Telco's and ISPs to actively support another option - the Home Office using Carnivore-like probes to suck up all the comms data, and having total control over access - because they don't want those costs and hassles. So the Telcos and ISPs (portrayed as practicality) are on the Home Office's side when it comes to the fight for this prize of power vis-a-vis the intelligence services and the cabinet office.

The object of the whole exercise is that the Home Office can get anything it wants whenever it wants it, without any third party CIO's raising questions and without any other independent oversight, AND that everyone in Whitehall or the police or quangos or town halls who wants to get at communications data will have to ask the Home Office for it. Just like the ID scheme makes the Home Office the supreme department by giving it the key to tracking citizen interactions with the state for the official file (and gives it the whip-hand over the Treasury in particular), this would put the means for tracking citizen associations entirely within the Home Office.

It is well over Smith's head.

What a waste of taxpayers money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26301493)

This is a total waste of time, money and energy. Once the government announces it is going to snoop on anyone, anyone who knows they are up to no good will join all the other people using VPN connections terminating in less draconian countries.

I've been using Relakks for a while now, just to do my everyday surfing and emailing. I'm not hiding any illegal activity, I just value privacy. Posted anon for obvious reasons.

Journalspace to the rescue! (1)

cparker15 (779546) | more than 5 years ago | (#26303311)

Former Journalspace employees should start a data hosting company for opportunities just like this. If they can lose data that we don't want lost, they should have no problem losing data that we do.

Too early?

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