The most wide sweeping invasion of people’s privacy has passed into law after going through the lower and upper Houses of Parliament and has now been given assent by the Queen so what does the “Investigatory Powers Bill” mean for everyone in the UK?
This was a bill introduced by Theresa May when she was Home Secretary and was designed to legitimize the use by the government of surveillance powers to gather data about Citizens and residents of the United Kingdom.
The bill comes into force in 2017. When the bill was written it was because of the need or fears that we were under a risk of attack and needed to delve into the activity of potential terrorists online.
It has since been dubbed the Snoopers charter because it allows some people in high enough positions that should not have free and easy access to our online activity just that.
But muh Privacy…..!
yes what does that mean for our privacy? Well first of all it means that tour online browsing activity is kept for 12 months, that includes all the stuff that you post and then delete because it was a dumb statement to make, it includes your browsing history too so no hiding that you like to watch online porn late at night while everyone else is asleep, the all seeing eye of the government know your fetishes now!
There are at upwards of 50 different government authorities that can access your browsing data and online activity. This includes the expected ones from police and Miltiary to the Department of Health, the Tax Man and the Home Office. So now you might get an audit if you boast of massive income online or during an audit they may throw up where you lied to online friends or not so friendly people that you had a fictional mammoth earnings when are really on minimum wage in real terms.
The claim is that pulling information together like this they can create a pretty damn good picture of your character as a person.
While some have claimed that it your responsibility to keep your browsing history for the year, it is your ISP that will have to maintain records of everything you have done online, Hmm, wonder if they know whether your came during the online porn session?
Privacy advocates have suggested switching to TOR routers or using a VPN but will that work, after all the data still may be recorded, even if it is encrypted or hidden and we can all be sure that if enough people use methods to mask their activity someone like Theresa May could or would create a further law making these privacy methods illegal.
You may get hacked by the Government!
Yes this law doesn’t just stop at simple snooping of browsing history held by the ISP’s, it extends to making it perfectly legal for the government to hack into your computer, your mobile device and home routers and they don’t have to inform you that they are doing so and don’t have to get a warrant to do so or prove reasonable need to do so.
Literally it allows the government to do something that most hackers or online criminals would go to jail for decades for, for acts that some have received life sentences yet the government can legally do to you.
Yes, that means that they can do what they want. This is so far reaching that many despot’s running countries are looking at the same measures because it’s far more extensive than anything they have thought up.
The Government defends itself…
The government has tried to defend the bill by saying that only those that are suspected of doing something wrong will be targeted by the act but really is that a good enough defense of how wide sweeping this bill is.
You can’t get to see some acts online…
One of the other effects of this bill is that it includes controls on what you can and cannot view online. Does this sound like China?
So while you are watching your online porn late at night you may find that suddenly the fetish that you love watching is no longer available. This that like to see a woman having sex while “she’s on the rag” cannot view that in the UK, other acts are banned from being viewed. In fact some porn websites are now making a special section just for UK viewers that only gives access to “allowed” content.
Some movies that show certain acts in scenes now have to be edited by the streaming agent under this law or not be viewable in the UK.
Finally 1994 has arrived in 2016. You are no longer free to live your life how you desire, you are being watched and you must comply.