Big Brother Watch supporters will no doubt be aware of the important debate on privacy and the internet which took place in the Houses of Parliament yesterday. Only a few, however, were able to make the journey to Parliament to watch the debate in person.
Opening the debate, Robert Halfon MP said:
"In recent years, we have become increasingly focused on freedom. With every terrorist atrocity, our civil liberties have been curtailed, often in a somewhat draconian manner. I therefore welcome the coalition Government’s determination to redress the balance by reviewing the anti-terrorism legislation, scrapping identity cards, abolishing the national identity register and the contact point database, and halting the next generation of biometric passports. However, I do not wish to talk about state surveillance this afternoon.
"The issue of civil liberties and internet privacy first came to a head not long after I was elected to this House in May 2010. The newspapers revealed that Google had been mapping people’s personal wi-fi data without their permission… Many privacy campaign groups, such as Big Brother Watch, have raised awareness of the issue in the media"
A full copy of the transcript of the debate – including, amongst others, contributions from former Shadow Home Secretary Rt Hon David Davis MP, Labour's Ian Lucas MP, LibDem Don Foster MP and Nigel Dodds of the DUP – can be found here.