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Daniel Hamilton on Sky News discussing the facial recognition software on Facebook

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Weekly newsletter

Posted on by Big Brother Watch Posted in Home | 4 Comments

Welcome to the Big Brother Watch Newsletter! It was another busy week for the Big Brother Watch team with a scandal surrounding Facebook's use of facial recognition technology, Citigroup's compromising of the banking data of 200,000 of its customers, Stoke on Trent's efforts to hit motorists with even more parking fines and UK government moves towards imposing a UK-wide internet firewall. Over at the blog, we have started posting a 'links of the day' topic each evening to make it …

The National DNA database and its use across the UK

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Many thanks to the Big Brother Watch supporter who this morning kindly sent us a link to a fascinating section of the National Policing Improvement Agency's website. On the website, you can find a map of the 43 Police forces across the UK and information about the way in which they use the national DNA database.  The information for each county is broken down by the by gender, current age and visual appearance of individuals included on the database. You …

Space: the internet’s new frontier?

Posted on by Big Brother Watch Posted in International, Online privacy | 5 Comments

Guest post by Nick Pickles The UK Government is currently considering the possibility of a UK-wide firewall, which (simply put) would give the Government the ability to block access to websites from the UK. The argument has mainly been made around file-sharing sites, and to a lesser extent child pornography, and of course the Government insists that it would never be used for political reasons. Yet the example of the Arab Spring and the subsequent activities of Governments in shutting …

The government must lift the ban on using intercept evidence

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Regular visitors to the Big Brother Watch blog will be aware that BBW has long campaigned for a change in existing laws to allow intercept evidence to be used in terrorist trials. Big Brother Watch Director Daniel Hamilton has today outlined the case for the ban to be lifted in an article for the Total Politics magazine's 'The Idea' feature: "As long as the ban on the admissibility of intercept evidence remains in place, so do the many strange anomalies …

Weekly newsletter

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Blogs of the Week 75% of websites leak personal information A recent survey of some of the most popular websites on the internet has revealed that 75% of them leak personal information or identifying data to third-party tracking sites. The study was performed by university researchers, including Balachander Krishnamurthy of AT&T Labs, and Konstantin Naryshkin and Craig E Wills of Worchester Polytechnic Institute. Their report was presented at the Web 2.0 conference in California last month. Divisive CCTV project in …

Nicolas Sarkozy is wrong on internet regulation

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With the dust having settled following the recent E-G8 summit in Paris, many commentators have begun to express their concern at comments made by French President Nicolas Sarkozy championing tougher government control over the Internet. Addressing the summit, Sarkozy argued that internet users must not forget that "governments are the only legitimate representatives of the will of the people".  While we agree with Mr Sarkozy that the internet shouldn't be a "a parallel universe outside laws and morals", the free-flowing …

EU-wide DNA database ruled out… for now

Posted on by Big Brother Watch Posted in Europe | 3 Comments

Over at Public Service, there's an article drawing our attention to comments made by Europol Director Rob Wainwright about the future of DNA record sharing across Europe. Speaking to the website, Wainwright said: "I am not sure a major European DNA database for every citizen would be the right balance, it would be disproportionate so it's not something that is going to happen in the short term, I am sure". While it is encouraging that such a database has been …

Debate this evening: “Civil Liberties: Up in Smoke?

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'Voices of Freedom' debate hosted by the IEA The Free Society and Privacy International present
 "Civil Liberties: Up in smoke? Pre-debate drinks will be hosted from 6.15pm courtesy of Boisdale. The debate will start at 7pm and finish at 8pm.  IEA, 2 Lord North Street, London, SW1 (door on Great Peter Street) Chaired by Mark Littlewood (Institute of Economic Affairs), speakers include Peter Hitchens (Mail on Sunday), Simon Davies (Privacy International), Daniel Hamilton (Big Brother Watch) and Oscar-winning screenwriter Sir …

Media Coverage – June 2011

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For all media enquiries please call: 07810 785924 / 07583 523807 (24 hrs)  Thursday 30th June Telegraph – Hand over your NI number and date of birth if you want to keep the right to vote, Government says Daniel Hamilton, a director of Big Brother Watch, said: “We have managed to have elections in this country without surrendering this sort of information for hundreds of years. “Creating a database of National Insurance numbers has obvious risks for our privacy and …