Friday, February 6, 2009

Surveillance: Citizens and the State - a report by the House of Lords

Britain leads the world in the use of CCTV. We are the most spied-upon country in the world so it's welcome news to read about a report - Surveillance: Citizens and the State - by the House of Lords that is recommending more restraint over the use of data collection and electronic surveillance powers: Lords: rise of CCTV is threat to freedom The steady expansion of the "surveillance society" risks undermining fundamental freedoms including the right to privacy, according to a House of Lords report published today. The peers say privacy is an "essential prerequisite to the exercise of individual freedom" and the growing use of surveillance and data collection needs to be regulated by executive and legislative restraint at all times. (link via Henry Porter: Reaction to the House of Lords report on surveillance society The House of Lords report on Britain's surveillance society is a devastating analysis of the systems that have been installed by the authoritarian Labour government and the controlling forces emerging in local government. There is no question now that Britain's free society is under threat, and it is time for the public and opposition parties to declare an end to this regime of intrusion. The House of Lords aren't elected but they have spoken up for the freedoms of the British people more than our elected MPs have!


  1. That's because, apart from the few who are taking back-handers to pervert the course of Bills, they have more sense than that lot in the Commons. ;)

  2. I read this morning and it makes depressing reading.
    You know my feelings on the subject and really do wonder, even fear a little, for the future. xx

  3. Flighty, I agree that it makes depressing reading.

    I worry about the future too but at least the House of Lords is issuing strong warnings.

    I just hope it's not too late to control all of the Big Brother state surveillance in the UK before all the surveillance controls us!

  4. About time I say, it was only when I moved here I really appreciated how totally OTT the UK is on this!

  5. Indeed, it is very OTT in the UK as you say Sarah. I think - and fervently hope - that the British people are finally realizing how much their right to privacy and freedoms are being infringed on by the state. I don't expect the Labour government will backtrack and stop their growing use of databases and CCTV so it is up to the public and opposition parties to fight back - and NOT to vote the Labour party back in, in the next general election. If they get back in power - for a fourth term (no limits on terms in the UK as there is for US presidents), I dread to think how much worse the surveillance would get!

    It is time for a change in leadership and the Conservatives have said they will abolish the ID card scheme and the database.