Intellectual property in a digital age has been traditionally focused on issues like copyright infringement and patents. One issue that has not been covered is the implications for personal data.Where previously companies would pay ‘mystery shoppers’ or members of the public in some way for the information about how people’s retail habits, they are now able to access data generated by customers using their cards and process it into marketing data. Mastercard is the latest company to hit the headlines … →
Given the importance placed upon communications data in the PR offensive before the draft Communications Data Bill was launched , you would hope that the process to draft the Bill was rigorous and fully involved the companies affected. We already know from previous evidence that the main evidential basis for the bill came from a two week survey of selected police forces conducted fairly recently. Now evidence from the Joint Committee’s private sessions with communications companies Google, Yahoo and Twitter … →
“Technically, this amounted to intrusive surveillance, which the police can authorise, but the council cannot.” Cambridge City Council report. As reported on the front page of today’s Cambridge News, a report to Cambridge city council, to be discussed next week, highlights how the Council signed off on an operation to install hidden CCTV cameras in the home of a resident, despite not having the legal authority to do so. The situation clearly warranted action to protect the resident and … →
Last month we detailed how one of the key statistics being relied upon by campaigners calling for ‘default blocking’ of some internet content was based upon one very dubious survey in a single school. This kind of deliberately misleading scaremongering undermines the discussion about how best to protect children, and now it’s clear that commercial pressures are also leading to dodgy stats being pushed into the debate. This week, the Advertising Standards Authority has rebuked Carphone Warehouse for it’s marketing … →
Across the country, police forces are now busy tracking down people to hand over a DNA sample, not based on any current suspicion of committing an offence but purely because of historical offences that took place decades ago. The civil liberties implications of this kind of operation are clear. People, currently not under suspicion for any crime and who have served their punishment for past offences, are now hunted down simply in the hope that the force will get lucky … →
The internet of things is coming, and it’s not just the CIA who are excited. Last week Intel, the chip manufacturer, predicted that by 2015 there will be more than 15 billion internet-connected devices and one third of these connected devices will be intelligent systems. The CIA are already getting excited, with Director David Petraeus talking about the”transformational” effect on “clandestine tradecraft.” The proposed draft Communications Data Bill is so broadly drafted it’s been warned that a system to control … →
Big Brother Watch will be attending all three party conferences this year – here are the details of our events. For the events at UKIP and Conservative conferences you will not need a security pass, however both the Labour and Liberal Democrat events are inside the secure zone. Full details are below.
Based on data covering more than 2,000 secondary schools and academies, Big Brother Watch warns that there are more than 100,000 CCTV cameras in secondary schools and academies across England, Wales and Scotland. With some schools seeing a ratio of one camera for every five pupils, more than two hundred schools using CCTV in bathrooms and changing rooms and more cameras inside school buildings as outside, the picture across the country will undoubtedly shock and surprise many. To put into … →