(Bloomberg) -- U.K. Internet providers including Vodafone Group Plc, Sky Plc and BT Group Plc would be required to store customers’ Web histories for as long as a year under a new rule proposed by Home Secretary Theresa May.
The Investigatory Powers Bill would ask carriers to hold on to “Internet connection records,” which would give police the ability to see if a customer accessed an application like Google Maps or WhatsApp. It wouldn’t require carriers to keep records of full Web browsing history, May said in a presentation to Parliament Wednesday.
“It cannot be right that today the police could find an abducted child if the suspects were using mobile phones to coordinate their crime, but if they were using social media or communications apps then they would be out of reach,” May said. “Such an approach defies all logic and ignores the realities of today’s digital age.”
May is working to update rules governing the ability of authorities to tap into phones and computers and monitor communications, uniting disparate regulation under one bill and updating policies for the smartphone age. A previous bill, dubbed the “Snooper’s Charter” was struck down in 2013 after political rivals said it raised concerns about civil liberties.
Vodafone said in a statement that surveillance powers, while important “in supporting efforts to tackle serious crime, terrorism and threats” must be tightly targeted, only used when necessary to protect the public and balanced with the state’s obligation to protect privacy. The company said it’s too early to comment on specific elements of the proposed rules.
Register or login for access to this item and much more
All Information Management content is archived after seven days.
Community members receive:
- All recent and archived articles
- Conference offers and updates
- A full menu of enewsletter options
- Web seminars, white papers, ebooks
Already have an account? Log In
Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access